MAR 24 DE NOVIEMBRE DE 2020 - 03:16hs.
Leonardo Andreotti, IBDD president

"A lot of resources will circulate in the sport with regulation of various types of gambling"

Sports betting is a promising sector, according to lawyer Leonardo Andreotti. He currently serves as president of IBDD (Brazilian Institute of Sports Law), which aims to encourage the development of research in the field of Sports Law. In an exclusive conversation with GMB, he talked about how this vertical can positively affect Brazilian sport and explained the relevance of this activity in encouraging the creation of departments for integrity in national clubs.

Currently, sports lawyer Leonardo Andreotti serves as president of the IBDD, which was founded 15 years ago in São Paulo. The Brazilian Institute of Sports Law is a non-economic, non-political association, not affiliated with any club or college and whose main goal is the development of the study of Brazilian Sports Law. IBDD intends to stimulate the development of research in the scope of Sports Law at all levels, as well as to promote and intensify academic activities related to Sports Law and its members.

GMB - How do you see current boom of sports betting in Brazil? Do you consider that clubs are getting important sponsorship benefits?
Leonardo Andreotti
- Sports betting is already a reality. It is an area that is there, ready to be developed and applied, but it depends on regulation by decree. This boom is still a potential. We need to see in practice how the market will react to these regulations. At first, it is an interesting recipe for sport, especially considering that the legislation will bring benefits in terms of formality, including for the State through taxes. Despite being related to sports sponsorship, it is not exactly an intrinsic relationship. Of course, investment in this area will end up, positively, having a very relevant impact as investors will be attracted.

Would you like to be called by the Government to give an opinion or make any suggestions from the point of view of your area of ​​sports law? What key points should authorities take into account when drawing up the best regulation?
A dialogue is always very productive. If all the actors could be heard, we would certainly have a more appropriate regulation that is consistent with the reality and specificities of each sector. Sports betting influences many areas of sports law, especially regarding sports discipline. With bets, naturally there are also potential risks to the balance of competition through possible manipulation of results. How will this be seen? How can we have better legislation to punish those who manipulate the results? These are examples that demonstrate the importance of sports and law actors being heard, mainly, the protagonists of sports law.

There are often cases of fixed matches or suspicion alerts. What would be the best detection system to combat this problem in Brazil? In whose hands should the defense of integrity and punishment be left?
There are companies with meters that check for abnormalities in the matches. These abnormalities result in the need for an investigation. In practice, they are able to analyze whether or not there has been a violation of the rules.
Regarding who should be responsible for the defense of integrity and punishment, there will be a situation in which the sports justice will have the competence to appreciate and give a final resolution when this manipulation affects the sports disciplinary sphere. Understanding football as an economic phenomenon, of relevance to the nation and of public interest, of course, that Public Security, Power and Ministry, in addition to the Judiciary, need to act on this bias to avoid and punish any and all forms of manipulation of results.

With your experience after working as an arbitrator at the Brazilian Center for Mediation and Arbitration, do you consider the need to implement specific departments for integrity in sport? How do you believe that the regulation of sports betting can encourage inspection and the creation of areas designed for this within national clubs?
I think it is essential that mechanisms of regulation, prevention or punishment regarding the integrity of the sport are extremely important. The greatest legal asset to be protected in this case is competition, and it is only what it is because of the uncertainty of its results. This brings the interest of the public and investors, and that is where the recipe for maintaining the system itself comes from. So, preventing and protecting the integrity of sport is, perhaps, the most important and effective way to maintain sporting activity as an economic activity that it is too. Governance, compliance, data protection and other specific departments that aim to control and protect the integrity of the sport are extremely important.

It was issued PM 984/20, which determines that the rights to broadcast or reproduce sports matches belong to the club that play at home. The measure alters the Pelé Law, so teams that have not yet given up their rights could use their internet platforms to broadcast their home games or even sell them to interested sports betting sites. What is your point of view regarding this change?
Perfect legal acts must be preserved and it is a fact that if this change is confirmed in the legislative process, certainly other methods of image capture, broadcast and, consequently, commercialization and exploitation of the sport will be implemented and executed. Streaming has been a very innovative tool for three or four years. This PM seems to have come to give a push to an evolution that is inevitable.

Brazilian football has attracted a lot of attention from bookmakers, who have sponsored several Serie A teams. Volleyball is the second most popular sport in Brazil, but this industry has not yet seen the power of this activity. How can volleyball teams attract these investors who have invested so much in football uniforms in the country?
I would say that this applies not only to betting, but any other form of revenue for the confederation. The entities need to organize themselves so that they can make the investor understand that the modality has an important platform in terms of communication, of positive exploration of the image of the sponsor. Brazilian sport needs to be valued and reinvented to be seen as a prominent platform for brand activation. The market sets the tone and entities need to understand what the need is and what is the need to evolve internally. This will cause other recipes to come and help in the development of the sport. As an example, confederations are increasingly concerned with internal governance, the balance of competition, preservation, etc. All of this will generate an increasing interest from the investor in this entity.

Do you believe that the release and regulation of various types of games (such as casinos, bingos, etc.) can inject more investment in Brazilian clubs, just as the bookmakers have done in a massive way?
With this regulation, a lot of resources will circulate. When there is a circulation of resources, it is clear that, naturally, there is a very high chance that this income will pass through the clubs and the actors of Brazilian sport. Teams, management entities and athletes have recently suffered from a lack of resources. With this financial movement, of course, there will be revenues that can be better exploited within the scope of these entities.

Source: Exclusive GMB