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The Gambling Commission (UKGC) has completed its licence review of 888 without imposing any licence conditions, financial penalties, or other remedies on the group.

The UKGC expressed satisfaction with 888’s management and mitigation of risks associated with the licensing objectives under the Gambling Act.

The UKGC initiated the review in July 2023 amid previous discussions between 888 and FS Gaming Investments, regarding the potential appointment of former GVC (Entain) boss Kenny Alexander as the company’s new CEO. 

At the time, FS Gaming held a 6.6% stake in 888 and sought to leverage its influence to appoint Alexander as CEO, alongside Lee Feldman as chair and Stephen Morana as CFO. 

The group initially built up a 4.55% shareholding in 888 in June, and later secured the voting rights of another former GVC executive in DAZN CEO Shay Segev.

The licence review was prompted by the potential triggering of a change in corporate control if FS Gaming obtained a stake of more than 10% in 888, which would have required approval from the UKGC. 

Rejection of the corporate control application could have resulted in the revocation of 888’s UK licence.

However, 888 terminated the talks following concerns raised by the UKGC around the ongoing investigation into GVC’s Turkish business unit during Alexander’s tenure.

That came after Entain revealed in May that historical misconduct involving former third-party suppliers and ex-employees of the group may have occurred.

The probe focused on various potential offences, including a suspected breach of the Bribery Act.

Late last year, Entain reached a £585m Deferred Prosecution Agreement (DPA) with the UK’s Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).

Shortly after abandoning talks with FS Gaming, 888 appointed former Fortuna Entertainment CEO Per Widerström as chief executive.

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