The coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, continues to rampage across the globe. In its wake, the disease has left scores of individuals sick, dead, or unemployed. So far, Sydney has been the worst hit in Australia, with 2,734 reported infections and 21 deaths.

Even the mighty gambling industry has been forced to kneel before this pandemic. On March 23rd, the Aussie government announced at least a one-month closure of all clubs, pubs, hotels, and casinos.

Now, it’s being reported that even Tabcorp is on the ropes.

What is Tabcorp?

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you should be familiar with the name Tabcorp. Founded in 1994, following the privatization of the Victorian TAB, it serves as Australia’s largest gambling operator.

The company employees around 5,000 under normal circumstances, and they’re publically traded on the Australian Securities Exchange. 2017 was especially significant, as Tabcorp Holdings Limited merged with Tatts Group.

So what services do they provide? Well, Tabcorp operations can be divided into these five distinct brands:

  • TAB – Presents multiple betting opportunities across numerous digital channels. This brand serves Tasmania, Northern Territory, Victoria, South Australia, Queensland, New South Wales, and the ACT.
  • Keno – This lottery-style game is available in clubs and pubs across New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, and the ACT. Drawings are held every three minutes, and prizes can rise into the millions.
  • The Lott – This is the top lottery operator across the nation, with the exception of Western Australia. Brands include instant Scratch-Its, Set for Life, Oz Lotto, Lucky Lotteries, Powerball, and TattsLotto.
  • MAX – Formed in 2019, this brand is touted as the leading gaming services provider across Australia. They work with both governments and individual venues to provide training, market analysis, capital support, and more.
  • Sky Racing – This brand provides racing and sports programming throughout Australia. Thanks to Sky Sports Radio, they also broadcast results and analysis to other parts of the globe.

Layoffs & Lack of Business

With gaming venues and sporting events being brought to a halt, the industry has been seeking other ways to recoup their revenue. Egaming punting has become a more popular option, alongside obscure sports leagues such as men’s basketball in Tajikistan. However, none of these have successfully filled the gaping void left behind.

Due to this downturn, Tabcorp has decided to stand down in excess of 700 employees. This applies to brands that have been decimated by closures and cancellations, and it’s expected to last until June 30th.

However, employees for the company’s more resilient brands have also been impacted. These individuals are being required to take off one day per week for a period ranging from April 6th to June 30th.

Tabcorp CEO David Attenborough

Technology contractors for Tabcorp have also been hit hard. More than 160 of these individuals have been let go, with represents 40% of this position.

Even the high-and-mighty executives are feeling the financial pinch. Salaries for the Chairman and non-executive directors have been reduced by 10%. This comes on the heels of a previous 10% cut in September of 2019.

Finally, there’s CEO and Managing Director David Attenborough. The head of Tabcorp has also taken a pay cut, which amounts to a 20% drop for the remainder of the fiscal year.

Still Open for Business

Despite these financial hardships, certain elements of Tabcorp are still open for business. The digital channels operated by TAB are available, as are lottery and keno services at stores and newsagents.

Greyhound and harness races also continue, although they’re subject to government restrictions regarding public health. The only exception is in Tasmania, where they’ve had the good sense to suspend all such events for at least a month.

Additional Reading

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