GMB: How did you feel when you were called by the Brazilian Congress to contribute with your knowledge and experience? Why did you accept to participate?
Tiago Horta Barbosa: I have a feeling of great satisfaction in view of the possibility of being able to collaborate in this important moment in which the regulation of sports betting in the country is discussed, and also happy with the chance to expose a little of what I know about the necessary ways for the maintenance of the integrity in a post-regulatory scenario. In addition, I understand the invitation as a kind of recognition of the authorities of our legislative power in view of my work in this area which is obviously gratifying. In no way would I refuse this honorable call.
What do you think that you and your company can contribute with at this stage?
Sportradar has been very active in collaboration with public authorities from various parts of the world on the legalization and regulation of sports betting. Over the years we have been able to follow the development of this type of process in several countries and understand how they usually and should work. Our experience in the field has enabled us to gain a broad understanding of the subject from an in-depth analysis of the mistakes and successes practiced in the various jurisdictions. It is precisely this expertise that we intend to share with the Brazilian public authorities in this moment of debate. We are available to assist in the construction of a positive model for Brazil, that is to say, it can contribute to the promotion of the economy of the country and also to the interests of those who decide to make business in the area.
Regarding sporting integrity, Sportradar is now the world's leading authority on the subject. We believe that a regulated system, to work well, must have concerns in this area and strive to protect the credibility and unpredictability of sporting events and the business industry that permeates it. Regulation and integrity actions must go hand in hand, and this is an important foundation that Sportradar defends and that I will talk about. A model that does not strictly observe the precepts of integrity will certainly not work and so regulators should be aware of this.
Do you consider it is positive to hold this hearing? Do you think it can become a step forward or just one more of those that Brazil already had?
I consider it extremely positive that our Legislative Branch opens its doors so that sports betting specialists share their experiences and suggest alternatives that may contribute to the construction and future improvement of the regulation model that will be adopted. Perhaps the ideal is that this hearing had occurred prior to the approval of MP 846 and promulgation of Law n. 13.756 / 2018, but even now I believe there is scope for parliamentarians to assimilate important information that they may possibly share with the regulators of the Ministry of Economy. The channel of debate on the subject is now fundamental, and it can now become permanent due to the constant improvement of the model that will be released.
From your perspective, with this audience and the new government ... do you see the legalization of the activity closer than ever in the country?
There is no denying that the definitive regulation of sports betting in Brazil is very close. The very enactment of Law no. 13.756 / 2018, when deadlines were stipulated for the definition of the rules, was a clear step in this direction. The expectation of the market and I believe that the government itself, given the potential collection brought by the sports betting, is immense and I believe that soon we will have a good sports betting system in full operation in the country.
Source: Exclusive GMB