Betfair Signs Landmark Deal Showcasing Australian Racing

16th October 2009 11:47 am GMT

Betfair and the Victoria Racing Club have announced a landmark one-year agreement that will see the Melbourne Cup, one of Australia's most prestigious horse races, streamed online to Betfair's overseas customer base of over three million people.

Initially for a one year period, the non-exclusive agreement is the first time the VRC has allowed any overseas wagering company outside North America to stream its races online.

"We're delighted to have entered into this arrangement with the VRC. For our first local streaming agreement to cover Australia's premier race day is a real thrill for us. We're sure it will attract a lot of interest amongst our overseas customer base," said Betfair Australia CEO, Andrew Twaits.

"The challenge for us now is to work with the rest of the racing industry, including the other two codes, to help take Australian racing to the world.

Twaits said that Betfair's overseas customers have shown strong year-round interest in Australian racing, with over 40% of the people betting on Australian thoroughbred racing coming from overseas.

"Providing overseas punters with access to quality vision and tailored form can only increase their betting activity on the sport, which in turn will help grow racing's funding base," said Twaits.

Dale Monteith, Victoria Racing Club's CEO, said: "The VRC, which has pioneered wagering on Australian racing through the Melbourne Cup, is delighted to be able to partner with Betfair to take the 2009 Emirates Melbourne Cup Day to the world. This initiative builds upon strategies undertaken by the VRC, over the past decade, to encourage the world to wager on the race that stops our nation and to return tangible benefits to the Victorian Racing Industry.

"Last year it is estimated that 700 million people in 120 countries watched the Melbourne Cup live or on replay. The arrangement this year with Betfair will enable its customers to be able to watch the race once they have had a bet on the race.

Betfair will be paying the VRC a share of the revenue generated by overseas customers who view the stream. This includes revenue from transactions placed through Betfair's interface with Tote Tasmania.

Betfair also announced today a further deal with Tabcorp's racing broadcaster Sky Racing, to stream the best of Victoria's Spring Racing Carnival live online to Betfair's 1.4 million UK and Irish customers.

The deal will see Betfair stream the entire card at six spring meetings including tomorrow's Caulfield Cup, the Cox Plate, three days of the Melbourne Cup Carnival at Flemington, and the Sandown Classic from Betfair Park.

"We're thrilled to be partnering with Sky and delighted that we've been able to complete the deal in time to stream coverage of tomorrow's Caulfield Cup. Both parties have worked around the clock to ensure that we can take Australia's best racing to an international racing audience," said Twaits.

"We know our international customers have a thirst for Australian racing and the streaming of Victoria's spring racing is a springboard for our future plans to stream racing from all three codes to our overseas punters."

Betfair will be paying Sky Racing a percentage of gross revenue derived from associated markets.

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