The United Kingdom Gambling Commission (UKGC) has suspended the operating license number 039533-R-319369-021, issued to BGO Entertainment Limited. According to the report released on 15th October 2021, the gambling commission suspended BGO’s license amidst a review provided for under section 116 of the 2005 Gambling Act.
The review and suspension were prompted following concerns that BGO may have carried out its activities contrary to the guidelines of the Gambling Act and the conditions provided in the license. As such, the commission determined that the operator is unsuitable to continue carrying out its licensed activities. Among the raised issues were failure to protect consumers and other breaches for which a license might be suspended under section 118 (2) of the Act.
Why the UKGC Suspends Gambling Licenses
The UKGC is the premier commission that oversees online gambling operations in the UK. It issues licenses to qualifying operators, works on safe gambling standards, and monitors all activities to ensure all online casinos and sportsbooks abide by the guidelines and compliances provided in their license. For instance, all UK-licensed gambling operators must participate in the GamStop self-exclusion program and ban credit card payments.
Failure to do so will result in the immediate revocation of the license. Most guidelines are designed to protect consumers. The commission also uses guidelines provided in the gambling acts and amendments. For example, BGO’s license was suspended according to section 118(2) of the Act, which allows the commission to suspend licenses following a review under section 116 (1) or (2) and application of conditions under section 120(1). In most cases, the commission will suspend a license if the operator fails to comply with any provided guidelines.
Why Was BGO’s License Suspended?
The statement released by the UK Gambling Commission didn’t reveal a lot about the primary reasons for suspending BGO’s license. Instead, the commission indicated that BGO’s license suspension was in accordance with section 118(2) of the Gambling Act. This Act allows the UKGC to suspend operator licenses if they conclude that the operator has conducted activities contrary to or inconsistent with the objectives set in their license.
According to the UKGC statement, there were concerns that some of BGO’s activities were conducted contrary to the gaming regulations, deeming BGO unsuitable for conducting the activities set in their license. As a result, the commission suspended the license and will move on with the review. The new suspension isn’t the first time BGO Entertainment has crossed paths with the commission. In 2020, the operator was found to have massive AML controls failure and unresolved customer care issues.
What the Suspension Means for UK Punters
If you have an account with any of the casinos owned by BGO Entertainment Limited, the commission recommends contacting the customer service team in the respective platforms. The suspension doesn’t prevent players from accessing their accounts or withdrawing funds. If you are concerned about playing on NonGamStopSlots non-UK sites, you can consider various UKGC casinos where you will have full support from the commission. However, UK punters can play wherever they want, so you’ll still be able to gamble on BGO without breaking any regulation. If BGO decides to continue operating without a UKGC license, here’s what the suspension means for UK punters:
- No GamStop Regulations – You could resume playing on the site if you were blocked from accessing BGO casinos because of GamStop restrictions. The suspension removes all obligations to the commission, meaning BGO casinos can operate as offshore independent websites not required to comply with any UKGC rules.
- No Credit Card Restrictions – UKGC licensed sites are required to ban the use of credit cards. This restriction only applies to UK casinos, which BGO is no longer part of, so players can continue to use credit cards to complete deposits and withdrawals on the casino.
What the Suspension Means for BGO
BGO Entertainment Limited can no longer present its online casinos as UK websites until further notice from the commission. The UKGC’s statement indicated that the commission has made its expectations clear to the operator. BGO should focus on treating all consumers fairly and providing information about all developments that impact them.
At the moment, the operator cannot offer or market its products to the UK market. However, BGO Entertainment Ltd. has another license from Alderney and can continue to provide its gambling products to online punters from across the world. If BGO wishes to regain access to the UK market, the operator must comply with all conditions set forth by the gambling commission.
Which BGO Casinos Are Affected by The Suspension?
BGO Entertainment Limited is a renowned gambling operator licensed in Alderney and owns various online casinos, including bgo.com, m.bgo.com, vegasluck.com, powerspins.com and chilli.com. Since the suspension became effective upon the announcement, all the gambling websites owned by BGO are no longer backed by the UKGC license.
Unfortunately, this means BGO casinos cannot operate legally as UK casinos. However, UK punters can continue to explore games on the website since no law prohibits players from gambling on offshore sites. That said, the license suspension means players will not enjoy the strict consumer protection and other benefits of UK licensed websites.
The UK Gambling Commission has been praised for upholding the strictest standards and dedication to consumer protection. Casinos licensed by the commission are considered the safest and most reliable websites available for online punters. However, the UKGC is one of many credible commissions that regulate gambling activities.
Other noteworthy regulators include Malta Gaming Authority, Curacao Gaming Commission, Alderney Gaming Control Commission and Gibraltar Betting and Gaming Association. Players can also find sites licensed in Australia, the US, Canada, India, and many other jurisdictions with a legal gambling scene. The suspension of BGO’s license effectively omits all its casinos from the list of UK gambling sites.