12 Oct 2010

Race Fields - Sportsbet / RVL Agreement

by Tony Rein, Andrew Clarke, Joanne Kleydish

Sportsbet and Racing Victoria Limited have settled their Federal Court action.

In what has been described as a truce following a four year battle over Victorian race fields fees, corporate bookmaker Sportsbet and Racing Victoria Limited (RVL) have signed a two-year fee agreement which will see the end of Sportsbet's Federal Court action against RVL.

In the Victorian race fields proceedings, Sportsbet was contesting the validity of the payment of race fields fees to RVL. The parties reached an agreement in September for a fee structure based on gross profits. Under a two-year agreement due to expire in August 2012, Sportsbet has agreed to pay to RVL 10 percent of gross profits for 10 months of the year and 15 percent during spring carnival time (October and November) for the use of race fields information. Limiting the chances of further action against RVL, the gross revenue model was also agreed to by nine other corporate bookmakers licensed in Victoria.

As well as withdrawing its Federal Court proceedings against RVL, as a sign of good faith, Sportsbet promised to pay $4.3 million which had been in trust awaiting conclusion of the matter. This payment is in addition to the $4.6 million already paid by Sportsbet. With Racing NSW continuing to fight for a turnover model in the NSW version of the proceedings, Clayton Utz continues to monitor developments around Australia closely.


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Clayton Utz communications are intended to provide commentary and general information. They should not be relied upon as legal advice. Formal legal advice should be sought in particular transactions or on matters of interest arising from this communication. Persons listed may not be admitted in all States and Territories.