Wednesday 11th July 2012

Levy Board Chairman Reports Progress in the 2011/12 Annual Report

The Horserace Betting Levy Board has released its Annual Report today, which includes the audited accounts for 2011/12.

In his Chairman’s Statement, Paul Lee reviews:

• The rise in Levy income and other receipts by nearly 25% from £60.2m to £74.9m, which was within the range envisaged by the Secretary of State in his Determination of the 50th Levy Scheme.

• The Board’s achievement in operating a balanced budget and its ability to begin rebuilding reserves, providing greater confidence and a measure of stability for the future.

• The process for agreement of the terms of the 51st Levy Scheme.

• The Board’s commitment to seek to improve the relationships between Betting and Racing and to support Government to find the best answer for the future of the Levy or its replacement.

The Annual Report details the full range of activity over the past year, including the Board’s decision to make further changes to the prize money distribution system providing a more direct and faster link between a racecourse’s performance and the contribution from the Board, which increases responsiveness in the incentive/reward system. Detailed analysis of the performance of fixture slots was given considerable assistance by the provision by bookmakers of confidential betting data, which in turn helped to inform proposals for the optimum fixture framework.

The Annual Report also notes that calendar year 2012 saw an increased allocation to prize money of £38.2m (2011: £34.1m) with specifically targeted support through the Quality Support Fund.

On the income side, the Board’s accounts show that total Levy yield for the 50th Levy Scheme (2011/12) was £74.9m, inclusive of voluntary contributions and other revenue. The increase arose in part because of changes to the 50th Levy Scheme as contrasted with the 49th Levy Scheme, particularly an increase in the headline rate from 10% to 10.75% and alterations to the threshold relief for Licensed Betting Offices.