Betting giant says smaller Irish rivals will go under
The chief executive of Paddy Power Betfair expects some smaller high street rivals in Ireland to close outlets after the betting tax was doubled to 2% in January.
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Despite opposition to the Irish government's plan to hike the tax from 1% to 2%, the increase went ahead in the last Irish Budget.
"It is inevitable that when you push taxes up, some of the smaller players move out," said Peter Jackson. "There's a point where people struggle to operate."
Mr Jackson said that the shake-out in the UK a few years ago as a result of tax changes probably hadn't been substantial enough. In Australia, extra taxes had prompted consolidation, he pointed out.
"There are changes afoot I suspect in Ireland and we will see some impact on some of the smaller independents. That is inevitable I'm afraid when governments introduce some of these high level taxes. It's only the scale players that can afford to accommodate these extra hits," he added.