We will continue to work closely & collaboratively with industry stakeholders to drive ongoing improvements in safer gambling & customer protection.
888 Holdings has said that thanks to its AI-powered responsible gambling Control Centre, its “customers are empowered to make safe and responsible decisions about their gambling.”
The Group says that the Control Centre gives its customers “new levels of data and clear, transparent insights that will help them stay informed and in control.”
The Control Centre made its first debut in late 2020 in the UK market as part of the operator’s Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) efforts.
Whether playing on 888sport, 888casino, or 888poker, players can monitor their activity, as well as implement caps and limits on how much money and how much time they spend gambling.
Back in May, 888 also revealed that in 2021 — a year after launching the Control Centre in the UK market — it saw an increase of players using responsible gambling (RG) tools on its site go up by 23%.
Andrew Anthony, VP of Customer Safety and Due Diligence at 888 Holdings, answered some of our questions, helping us dig deeper into the Control Centre and how it came to be.
How did the Control Centre come into existence? What was the inspiration behind it?
The Control Centre is a customer-focused interface that provides a “one-stop-shop” for safer gambling support. It provides two main benefits — firstly, transparent real-time data about customer spending, and secondly, simple and intuitive tools to put controls in place.
It forms part of 888’s wider Made to Play Safely pillar of its ESG framework 'Made for the Future’, which seeks to ensure the business’ long-term sustainability and value creation for all stakeholders.
Promoting and ensuring safer gambling is at the heart of the user experience for all 888 players and is an integral part of 888’s product offering. This reflects our commitment to investing resources and expertise to create industry-leading, user-friendly, and AI-driven safer gambling tools. Compliance with regulations is a given for our business, but 888 aims to go beyond this, with a philosophy built around normalizing customers’ use of safer gambling tools.
888 aims to help players understand and manage their gambling behavior, enabling them to see their play clearly and use quick and simple tools to control their activity.
The Control Centre was initially introduced in the UK at the end of 2020 and rolled out across additional products and markets during 2021 and 2022. By Q4 2021, it was available to 39% of the Group’s global customers.
What catalyst, if any, made you overhaul your previous RG offering into the Control Centre?
We are most proud of creating a really intuitive, simple, & quick product that helps customers see safe gambling & limits as a normal part of the playing experience.Our business is based on ensuring our customers are empowered to make safe and responsible decisions about their gambling. We are committed to continually investing in our teams and technology to prevent gambling-related harm. We are confident that innovative features like the Control Centre will offer customers new levels of data and clear, transparent insights that will help them stay informed and in control.
The development and rollout of the Control Centre was not an overhaul of our previous offering but rather further evidence of the investment and focus 888 has been making on safer gambling more broadly in recent years. Made to Play Safely is the safer gambling pillar of our ESG framework Made for the Future, which seeks to ensure we operate responsibly and sustainably.
The Control Centre is continually being developed and reflects 888’s wider ambition to go beyond what is merely required by the regulation when it comes to safer gambling and invest in user-friendly safer gambling tools.
We want to be one of the world’s leading online betting and gaming companies, which is a crucial element of our strategy to achieve this.
Are all the RG tools found in the Control Centre the same for every player in every jurisdiction? If not, how do they differ per market?
Our aim is to complete the rollout of the Control Centre in regulated markets … and to cover at least 90% of non-US regulated revenuesWhile there are many similarities between markets, Control Centre offers different tools specific to each, according to regulation and risk. Our offering is continuously reviewed by market.
Is the Control Centre available to players in every market you serve? If not, please tell us which ones and if you expect to roll it out to those markets?
The Control Centre is live in the UK, Denmark, and Italy — following the latter’s recent launch. Our aim is to complete the rollout of the Control Centre in regulated markets — currently including Romania and Spain, for example — and to cover at least 90% of non-US regulated revenues, in line with our ESG framework 'Made for the Future’, which was formalized with new and bolder ambitions this year.
What in the Control Centre are you most proud of?
We are most proud of creating a really intuitive, simple, and quick product that helps customers see safe gambling and limits as a normal part of the playing experience. We were also proud to see that those customers who use the Control Centre in 2021 were:
- 20% more likely to amend their Personal Deposit Limit
- 102% more likely to use the “take-a-break” tool
- 17% more likely to set a self-exclusion limit
These are all statistically significant increases compared to a control group and illustrate why we are so determined to extend the use of this powerful technology over the coming years.
We will continue to find new ways to use our technology, real-time data, & a growing understanding of the markers of harm to identify potential harm & stop it before it happens.
How do you think your Control Centre compares to other RG offerings from your competitors?
At 888, we are focused on making our own products and experience as good as we can make them.
What RG goals/initiatives will you be working on in 2022?
We also recognize that simply supporting players is not enough. We know that some can experience harm from gambling, and we will continue to find new ways to use our technology, real-time data, and a growing understanding of the markers of harm to identify potential harm and stop it before it happens.
Safer gambling is an area for continuous improvement, and we will continue working closely and collaboratively with industry stakeholders to drive improvements in safer gambling and customer protection.