UK – Bookmaker Betfred’s owners are reportedly making millions of pounds from health and wellbeing company Health Assured as disclosed by a UK media company.
Betfred is a UK bookmaker that was established in 1967 as a single sportsbook premises in Salford. In 2004 it reportedly had a turnover of over 3 billion pounds.
The report says that the people behind Betfred, also own Health Assured, which provides services to government organisations and its staff, including the National Health Service (NHS).
According to the firm’s website, it treats people with health problems and provides counselling for issues such as reckless behaviour, including gambling.
Jonathan Ashworth, a British Labour and Co-operative Party MP for Leicester South since 2011 commented:
“Addiction, whether from gambling, drinks or drugs, is a growing mental and public health emergency in society. Of course all NHS staff should have access to mental and wellbeing support but this looks like an unacceptable conflict of interest. Corporate gambling interests should be nowhere near our health services like this.”
The two businesses are entirely separate entities.
In response, Health Assured said:
“All public sector contracts we have been awarded have thorough due diligence carried out before are they issued, including looking for conflicts of interest.”