With regulatory tangles ongoing in many territories Betfair has hit another bump in South Africa. This is a real shame as South Africa is on the same time zone as the UK. Betfair has already sent out emails to affected customers. Here is an extract of the key elements of the email: -
“We’re writing to inform you that following the recent ruling by the South African Supreme Court of Appeal, Betfair has decided that as of 00:01 GMT on February 14th 2012, its website and all associated products will no longer be accessible in South Africa, or to South African residents.
As of the above time, all existing accounts will be suspended, therefore we ask that you ensure that all funds are withdrawn from your account before then. If your account is currently suspended the issues relating to that suspension must be resolved before any withdrawals can be made”
It’s another to add to the long list of complex, messy, regulatory, most likely protectionist, issues. Currently the number of territories where it’s OK to use Betfair is in the minority and the list is getting smaller. While the US is looking more positive recently, it’s likely that will only be a beachhead in a much longer battle. Till then other territories, even in Europe, are proving a prickly problem. It seems the anti-exchange proponents are currently winning their argument.
Ultimately I believe that the will of people will decided the very long term outcome of these sorts of things and it’s difficult to go against the value proposition that exchanges offer over traditional gambling. So if you want to benefit from that, move to the UK!