Chinese takeout

Bet365’s foray into the Chinese market may have expanded to include more than 12,000 domain names during the pandemic. IP addresses registered in Australia but located offshore, some possibly in Hong Kong, have been a key part of its operation.

By Jack Kerr

The Chinese government has mounted a significant crackdown on illegal gambling, and particularly the use of overseas services, in recent years. 

Around 110,000 people were arrested for illegal gambling in 2020 alone, according to a report compiled by the Asian Racing Federation

“Operation Chain Break is broader in scope compared to previous anti-illegal betting campaigns, targeting overseas entities and countries, and involves various government stakeholders,” the ARF said.

While there is a legal market for gambling in China, the ARF estimated the country’s illegal market was twice its size, and it was this that the authorities targeted with “a series of concerted law enforcement and legislative efforts”.

“China’s crackdown on illegal betting does not only affect China,” it wrote, “but has multiple and wide-ranging impacts for legal and illegal betting operators across Asia and beyond.”

But what has been the impact for the company self described as the world’s biggest online sports betting company?


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