Golden Tiger Casino advert "misleading", says advertising watchdog
Malta-licensed online gambling group Apollo Entertainment – owner of the Golden Tiger online casino – has been rapped over the knuckles by the UK Advertising Standards Authority over an email promo that omitted important details of a GBP 1,500 free bonus offer.
The welcome bonus offer failed to make clear that a betting requirement applied before customers could withdraw their winnings.
An email for Apollo's Golden Tiger Casino online casino, which operates under a Kahnawake Gaming Commission licence, stated "Congratulations – You're a weekly winner. GBP 1500 Free! Welcome Bonus. We are offering you: GBP1500 free to play for one hour! Use our money to play our games. If you win, you get to keep it. Deposit is required to claim your winnings."
It also stated "Limited time offer! Mobile users get 30 free spins. No deposit required. Plus GBP 1500 in welcome bonuses. Click here to claim now". The ad included a footnote which stated "Terms and conditions may apply".
A member of the public who responded to the offer subsequently complained that the claim "if you win, you get to keep it" was misleading as it failed to make clear that a wagering requirement applied before consumers could withdraw their winnings.
Apollo Entertainment Ltd explained that when recipients clicked through from the email, they were taken to the promotion's landing page on the Golden Tiger Casino website, where a fuller explanation of the offer was available, indicating that a 60 times play through was attached to the bonus offer.
Apollo believed the email was factual in that consumers could withdraw whatever they won, provided that they met the wagering requirement stated on the landing page.
The ASA adjudicators upheld the complaint, noting that they considered the email included an offer that encouraged recipients to register an account with the Golden Tiger Casino and therefore, consumers should have been made aware of any significant applicable conditions affecting the offer.
"We acknowledged that the email stated "terms and conditions may apply", but we understood from Apollo that consumers were presented with a hyperlink to the terms and conditions terms via a hyperlink from the promotion's landing page," the ASA finding reads. "We therefore considered that the terms and conditions did apply and furthermore, that they were presented to consumers two clicks away from the email. The email should therefore have stated that terms and conditions applied (rather than that they "may apply") and should have included all conditions which might have affected a consumer's decision to take up the offer."
The Authority ruled that the email must not be used in its current form again, and that Apollo must ensure that its adverts include all the applicable significant conditions for promotions where their omission was likely to mislead.
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