Firms To Watch: Gaming and betting

In September 2023, Irwin Mitchell took on a team of regulatory lawyers from Ince & Co, acquiring a group with a 'depth of gaming industry knowledge, derived from collective decades of experience'. Key names include Philip Somarakis, who has joined as national head of regulatory, experienced senior associate Andrew Cotton, a member of the International Masters of Gaming Law, and Julie Dao, who has a focus on anti-money laundering compliance.
Led by M&A expert Tony Downes , who joined from Proskauer Rose LLP  in 2022, Sidley Austin LLP specialises in corporate and commercial matters in the betting and gaming sector.

Gaming and betting in London

Bird & Bird LLP

The ‘pragmatic, commercial and knowledgeable’ team at Bird & Bird LLP pulls together a strong offering with licensing and regulatory mandates, work related to acquisitions and major sponsorship deals standing out as recent areas of activity for the firm. Rated by clients as ‘one of the leaders in the UK gaming law space‘, Andy Danson heads up the practice, and is currently leveraging his commercial and regulatory know-how to guide Allwyn through the transition process as the company prepares to become the UK National Lottery operator in February 2024. Elizabeth Dunn‘s broad practice extends to advising on gambling sponsorship arrangements. Robert Turner is an authority on international wagering rights agreements. Lucy Paterson, who joined from Harris Hagan in August 2022, further contributes to the collective licensing expertise at the practice.

Practice head(s):

Andy Danson

Other key lawyers:

Elizabeth Dunn; Robert Turner; Lucy Paterson


‘They do what it says on the tin. No gimmicks, no fads, just sensible, pragmatic and professional.’

‘The level and depth of knowledge and network of experts they are able to draw on to ensure clients are supported at every level.’

‘The team are well equipped to help clients navigate through complex gambling legal and regulatory frameworks, whilst at the same time remaining commercially astute.’

‘I have only had the pleasure of working with Andy Danson and Elizabeth Dunn from the team. Both are an absolute delight to work with.’

‘Andy Danson is one of the leaders in the UK gaming law space. He has first-rate client service skills, and is responsive and thoughtful.’

‘The team is pragmatic, commercial and knowledgeable about our business and way of working.’


Key clients




William Hill


Stronach group

Metric Gaming

White Hat Gaming

TT Bond Partners


Arsenal FC

Mob Inc

Work highlights

  • Advising Allwyn on the transition process of migration from Camelot to Allwyn in February 2024.
  • Advised William Hill on commercial contracts and regulatory matters and on the implementation of new UK rules concerning advertising of ‘strong appeal’ to children.
  • Advised TT Bond Partners in respect of a prospective takeover offer for Playtech Plc, which involved gambling due diligence.


Noted for its capabilities in online gaming, CMS leverages its ‘deep industry knowledge‘ in areas such as regulatory investigations, M&A and employment litigation. The team is well regarded for its regulatory and day-to-day operational expertise. David Zeffman oversees the practice; his varied case load includes advice on regulatory compliance considerations for the skill-based mobile games. Rob Willis acts on a range of corporate matters including fundraisings and corporate reorganisations. Willis’ colleague Stephen Hignett frequently contributes his tax expertise in both contentious and non-contentious situations. Contractual and media related matters for the gambling industry fall within Tamsin Blow‘s areas of expertise. Anna Soilleux-Mills excels in gambling regulatory mandates, while Alasdair Lamb is a key contact for B2B games suppliers and platform providers.

Practice head(s):

David Zeffman

Other key lawyers:

Rob Wills; Stephen Hignett; Anna Soilleux-Mills; Tamsin Blow; Alasdair Lamb


‘The team project manage difficult projects well and drill down to the key issues to be addressed. Where any uncertainty exists, they seek clarity to ensure that the client has a clear understanding of the relevant issue.’

‘We have found that all members of the team are very competent, ranging from David Zeffman and Anna Soulleux-Mills to Alasdair Lamb.’

‘CMS provides pragmatic advice for multi-jurisdiction gaming transactions. They have deep industry knowledge and are very responsive to client concerns.’

Key clients

888 Holdings Plc

Anzo Group

Apollo Global Management Inc

Ascot Racecourse


Avia Games Inc.



Blackstone Inc.

Bragg Gaming

Bruin Capital

Football Pools

Gamesys Group

Bally’s Interactive

Hard Rock Digital

IBID Group

IMG Arena


Kindred Group plc




News Group Newspapers Limited

Noel Hayden

Rank Group plc

RAW iGaming

Royal Panda

Starting Price Regulatory Commission




TGI Sport

Tom Hall



White Hat Gaming

Work highlights

  • Advised Anzo Group on its sale of independent UK-based iGaming content supplier, Roxor Gaming, to Aristocrat Leisure.
  • Advised Hard Rock Digital on its landmark strategic partnership with Playtech.
  • Advised the IBID Group and the Pragmatic Group on its exclusive multi-year partnership with DAZN Group.

Harris Hagan

Described as a ‘market leader in gaming lawHarris Hagan maintains a strong position in the market acting on big-ticket corporate transactions, Gambling Commission compliance investigations and licence reviews. The team is instructed by major land-based and online gambling businesses, start-ups, governments and trade associations. John Hagan co-heads the practice and frequently contributes his licensing and regulatory expertise to transactional mandates. Fellow co-head Bahar Alaeddini is also General Counsel of the International Association of Gaming Advisors and co-chairs its Programme Committee. David Whyte frequently advises on enforcement action taken by the Gambling Commission, while Jessica Wilson is a key contact for US based operators and suppliers.

Practice head(s):

John Hagan; Bahar Alaeddini

Other key lawyers:

Hilary Stewart-Jones; Julian Harris; David Whyte; Francesca Burnett-Hall; Jessica Wilson; Gemma Boore


‘The team is very knowledgeable about UK gambling laws and engaging with the regulator.’

‘The individuals at Harris Hagan have a deep knowledge of not just the British gambling laws, but also of the way in which the regulator operates.’

‘In-depth knowledge of gambling licensing in terms of regulations and how they are implemented.’

‘There’s no one else to go to other than Harris Hagan for everything gaming. One stop shop for all your needs. They deliver trust, confidence and integrity.’

‘Bahar Alaeddini and Jessica Wilson get full marks.’

‘Market leader in gaming law.’

‘John Hagan, Julian Harris and Bahar Alaeddini are prominent leaders in the gaming law field’


Work highlights

  • Acting on numerous operating licence reviews of high-profile and international B2C gambling operators.
  • Acting on numerous Commission compliance investigations

Mishcon de Reya LLP

Noted for its ‘practical approach and thorough knowledge of the industry’, Mishcon de Reya LLP‘s varied offering includes regulatory projects, tax and structuring advice and private and public company M&A. The practice has seen an increase in contentious instructions from clients who wish to challenge decisions made by regulators. Nick Nocton spearheads the team’s offering; his expertise spans digital assets and jurisdictional reviews of the legal and regulatory risks in various territories. Susan Breen is praised for her ‘innovative legal advice’ on issues such as cross-border commercial arrangements. Stuart McMaster is well placed to advise on data protection and data sharing matters, while Niki Stephens specialises in assisting B2C and B2B clients with regulatory matters. Tom Whitton is singled out for his commercial contracts advice.

Practice head(s):

Nick Nocton

Other key lawyers:

Susan Breen; Stuart McMaster; Niki Stephens; Tom Whitton


‘Practical approach and thorough knowledge of the industry.’

‘Susan Breen is very practical and provides innovative legal advice. She really goes the extra mile for us.’

Key clients

Entain plc

MGM Resorts International


William Hill

Aristocrat Leisure Limited

Everi Holdings Inc.

Novibet Group

Gameco LLC

Kambi plc

Betting and Gaming Council


Catena Media

GAN plc

Gaming Innovation Group Inc.

Angstrom Sports

Everymatrix Software Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Aristocrat on its recommended $2.1bn bid for Playtech plc, and on its acquisition of Roxor Gaming.
  • Advising Entain plc on a wide range of commercial, IP, regulatory and contentious matters.
  • Advised MGM Resorts International on regulatory approvals in the UK and Malta in connection with its $600m acquisition of LeoVega.

Wiggin LLP

Combining a ‘full service offering across commercial, corporate, litigation and regulatory work with extensive industry knowledge‘, Wiggin LLP‘s offering encompasses regulatory investigations, venture capital investments and white label arrangements. Practice chair Stephen Ketteley is praised for his ‘extensive and incomparable knowledge of gambling regulation’. David McLeish is an authority on M&A work in the gaming and betting space. Chris Elliott is described as ‘particularly strong on the details of British gambling regulation’. Bethan Lloyd has in-depth knowledge of strategic partnerships, while Oliver Tenzer‘s time as legal counsel at a leading sportsbook provider informs the commercial and regulatory assistance he gives to clients. Jason Chess became a consultant for the practice in April 2023.

Practice head(s):

Stephen Ketteley

Other key lawyers:

Jason Chess;David McLeish; Chris Elliott; Bethan Lloyd; Oliver Tenzer


‘Wiggin’s Betting & Gaming team is the pre-eminent practice in this specialist area of law. It combines a full service offering across commercial, corporate, litigation and regulatory work with extensive industry knowledge.’

‘David McLeish is a superb all round advisor and is valued for more than just his legal advice. His scope of knowledge is unrivalled and he provides honest and direct advice.’

‘Stephen Ketteley’s knowledge and experience of gambling regulation is extensive and incomparable – there is very little he doesn’t know about how gambling is regulated across the world.’

‘Chris Elliott has an encyclopaedic knowledge of gambling regulation, and is particularly strong on the details of British gambling regulation.’

‘ The team has deep knowledge of their subject area in various jurisdictions and excellent contacts at other firms outside the UK.’

‘Jason Fisher has brilliant knowledge and is always across the latest developments in a fast moving regulatory sector. We find he is very commercial and provides balanced advice within agreed timescales.’

Key clients

Flutter Entertainment



William Hill

Worldpay (from FIS)




Bally’s Corporation


Work highlights

Memery Crystal

Praised for dispensing commercial advice with ‘a clear eye on practical realities‘, Memery Crystal handles a broad range of matters, including casino acquisitions, the clearing of gambling products for the likes of ITV and Telegraph Media Group, lotteries, and gambling risk in a wide range of jurisdictions. Practice head Carl Rohsler is a contributing editor of the Gambling Law Review and frequently assists governments and regulators with efforts to regulate betting. Capital markets specialist Lesley Gregory contributes her corporate expertise, while Jonathan Riley is well placed to advise on IP matters and online gaming.

Practice head(s):

Carl Rohsler

Other key lawyers:

Lesley Gregory; Jonathan Riley


‘Advice is very commercial with a clear eye on practical realities.’

‘Carl Rohsler is incredibly responsive and will turn urgent matters around to meet deadlines.’

‘Excellent team with expert knowledge and experience of the gaming industry. Able to give professional legal advise for most situations with case examples. Very flexible with regards to calls and meetings.’

‘Carl Rohsler has expert knowledge of the gaming industry and I would recommend him without question.’

‘Leading industry expertise in lotteries and gaming.’

Key clients

ITV plc

Sorare SAS

Silver Point Capital

Leap Gaming

Jumbo Interactive

DFS Middle East LLC

Papaya Gaming

The Health Lottery

STV Group plc

Telegraph Media Group

Gaming Realms

Fulham FC


Union Jaxx

Avantage Entertainment

Buzz Bingo

Goldchip Gaming

Metric Gaming

Meridian Bet

Work highlights

  • Acting for Silver Point Capital in completing the reorganisation and change of control of Metropolitan Gaming Limited (formerly Caesars Entertainment UK).
  • Advising ITV plc on its games and competitions as part of
  • Advising Australian listed lottery provider Jumbo Interactive in relation to its acquisition of StarVale, a UK External Lottery Manager.

Northridge Law LLP

Northridge Law LLP provides ‘balanced and practically useful advice’ to gambling operators, games developers and innovative tech companies, with the team advising on a broad range of matters such as regulatory licensing, transactional work and gambling sponsorship arrangements. Practice chair Melanie Ellis is well versed in licensing, advertising and anti-money laundering procedures, while Tom Edmonds has significant experience of advising sports and betting companies on commercial agreements that straddle the two sectors.

Practice head(s):

Melanie Ellis

Other key lawyers:

Tom Edmonds


‘Very responsive and excellent understanding of commercial and product aspects in addition to legal knowledge.’

Expertise in UK gambling compliance, the legal process and interactions with regulators, always with one eye on the bigger picture.’

‘Melanie Ellis demonstrates commercial pragmatism supported with a great deal of technical and operational knowledge & experience. ’


Key clients

Evolution Gaming

Shareholders of InTouch Games

Run It Once

SportyStuff TV Limited


Who Knows Wins

BRS Golf


Sporting Chance Prize Draw

Veriff OU

Transigo Ltd

Dazzletag Entertainment Ltd

Work highlights

  • Advising Evolution Gaming on gambling licensing and compliance matters.
  • Advised the shareholders of In Touch Games on the company’s acquisition by Skywind Holdings, including assisting with due diligence and regulatory aspects.
  • Advised Betway on a wide range of sponsorship deals, including high profile international football sponsorships and US-based franchises.

Pinsent Masons LLP

Praised for its ‘remarkable reach’, Pinsent Masons LLP advises land-based, online & mobile clients on a broad array of corporate, commercial, and intellectual property issues. ‘Gambling industry legend’ Diane Mullenex heads the global gaming and gambling practice from the firm’s London office; she is an authority on the French gaming market. Audrey Ferrie‘s gambling licensing expertise extends to advocacy before committees, while corporate specialist Gareth Jones  frequently advises on major transactions in the space.

Practice head(s):

Diane Mullenex

Other key lawyers:

Audrey Ferrie; Gareth Jones


‘The firm is truly international with a remarkable reach.’

‘Diane Mullenex is a legend within the gaming and gambling industry.’

‘Great knowledge of the market, practical approach’

Key clients

PLR Media

World Athletics

Work highlights

  • Devised a significant trademark filing programme for some of the PLR Media’s leading products.
  • Advising a client on setting up the necessary legislative and regulatory framework in order to introduce physical casinos as well as online gambling in the UAE.
  • Advising a gaming client on the entire breadth of its regulatory compliance needs both in the UK as well as in France.

Poppleston Allen

Known for its deep knowledge of the land-based bingo industry, Poppleston Allen assists the industry’s largest operators with their gambling applications, compliance matters and Bingo Premises Licences. The unit team is well regarded for for its work within the lottery industry. ‘Stand out partner’ Nick Aaron leads the team, advising a variety of clients ranging from large corporations to single site operators on issues such as the licensing regulatory aspects of acquisitions. Richard Bradley is noted for his expertise concerning the development of bespoke compliance regimes and the drafting of licensing clauses for asset purchase agreements.

Practice head(s):

Nick Arron

Other key lawyers:

Richard Bradley; Imogen Moss; David Inzani


‘The licensing team here are very commercially focused.’

‘We work closely with Nick Arron and David Inzani and their communication is first class.’

‘The team are exceptional. They are all knowledgeable, engaging and patient.’

‘Nick Arron is the stand out partner.’

‘ The support we receive is extremely professional, in time, precisely answered and very often pro-active.’

‘The team at Poppleston are all approachable and extremely knowledgeable in their relevant fields of expertise.’

‘The team all adopt a professional, helpful approach.’

Key clients

Buzz Group Limited

Gauselmann Group.

Shua Limited

Power Leisure Bookmakers Limited

Shua Limited

Merkur Slots Casino UK.

Namco UK Limited.

Bourne Leisure Limited.

Parkdean Resorts UK Limited.

Palatial Leisure Limited.

City Gaming Limited.


Butlins Skyline Limited

Blueprint Gaming Limited.

Blueprint Operations Limited.

Regal Amusement Machine Sales Limited.

National Bingo Game Association.

Bede Gaming Limited.

Leisure Electronics Limited

Wexel Gaming Limited.

Woods Whur

With a strong focus on licensing applications and advocacy in contested casino applications, Woods Whur is well equipped to advise adult gaming centre operators, major bookmakers and new entrants to the casino market. The team frequently advises operators on the advantages and disadvantages of varying European jurisdictions. A triumvirate of Leeds-based partners lead the team: Paddy Whur, Andrew Woods, and Christopher Rees-Gay; all three are licensing experts who handle Licensing Sub-Committee applications and UK courts. Amanda Usher contributes her licensing expertise and frequently submits operating licence applications for both remote and non-remote clients.

Practice head(s):

Paddy Whur; Andrew Woods; Chris Rees-Gay

Other key lawyers:

Amanda Usher


‘Very pragmatic in their approach. Client focused. This is in addition to their capabilities and knowledge on the subject which just makes it so much easier to work with them.’

‘Go the extra mile for their client. Have shown dedication and flexibility throughout.’

‘The practice specialises in licensing and planning for leisure and gaming and are one of the best firms.’

Key clients

Future Leisure Limited

Metropolitan Gaming

Jennings Racing Limited

TGP Europe Online Gaming

Mayfair Casino

East Kent Leasing

Rank Leisure Limited

Chongie Entertainment

Boylesports UK Limited

Mecca Bingo Limited

888 Holdings Limited

Shipley Amusements

Grosvenor Casinos Limited

Silvertime Amusements Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted in several successful contested licensing hearings for Adult Gaming Centre Premises licences, including a successful appeal against Tower Hamlets Council in the Thames Magistrates’ Court.
  • Assisted 888 Holdings with making state by state applications across the US.
  • Instructed by Rank Leisure Limited to negotiate with Westminster City Council, over the imposition of a byelaw to restrict hours of operations of Adult Gaming Centres.

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner advises on strategic acquisitions, litigation, in addition to a broad array of regulatory and commercial matters. The team is well regarded for its contentious expertise in judicial reviews. Jeremy Bark and Benjamin Lee jointly lead the team; Bark has a proven track record in handling new license applications, while Lee is a corporate finance specialist who is noted for handling ‘big-ticket work, particularly where there is a public markets element’. Marie Johnson adds to the corporate finance expertise at the firm, while Oran Gelb is a ‘go-to guy‘ for contentious work.

Practice head(s):

Jeremy Bark; Benjamin Lee

Other key lawyers:

Marie Johnson; Oran Gelb


‘We use Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner for big-ticket work, particularly where there is a public markets element.’

‘I rate Ben Lee at BCLP very highly. He is commercial and a great lawyer too.’

‘Oran Gelb is our go-to guy on contentious matters at BCLP.’ 


Key clients

New Lottery Company


Costigan King

Praised for its ‘exemplary understanding of the gambling industry’, Costigan King sports longstanding experience in advising on commercial transactions in online gaming, offshore company structures and IP matters. Additionally, the group handles a range of contentious issues in the space. Arianne King heads up the gaming and betting division, having in-depth knowledge of the growing interface between gaming and blockchain technology. Lynn McCaw contributes her longstanding corporate and commercial experience in transactional matters, and Nadia Armah maintains her focus on the IP aspect of commercial agreements.

Practice head(s):

Arianne King

Other key lawyers:

Lynn McCaw; Nadia Armah


‘The team is very strong at dealing with any situation we throw at them.’

‘Costigan King can communicate in the language of business leaders and not go for lawyer speak overkill when the situation is more suited to a business minded solution.’

‘Costigan King has an exemplary understanding of the gambling industry.’

Key clients

Star Racing Limited

Playmaker Capital Inc

Playbook Engineering

Juste Puharic

Les Ambassadeurs

Planet Bet Limited

Playbook Gaming Limited

Two-Up Agency Limited

Star Sports (On Course) Limited

RPM Gaming

A Jolly Consulting

Work highlights

  • Acted for Star Racing Limited in a regulatory license review brought by the Gambling Commission.
  • Advised Playmaker Capital on its purchase of the entire share capital of Two-Up Agency.
  • Advising Playbook Engineering on multiple licensing, commercial and intellectual property matters for its online gambling platform.

Hugh James

The gaming, betting and licensing team at Hugh James is well regarded for its IP licensing, and sports betting and licensing work. Engaged by both land-based and online clients, the unit is also equipped to handle an array of domestic and international commercial, regulatory and compliance work across. Practice head Aled Walters, who divides his time between Cardiff and London, is active across business purchase agreements in foreign jurisdictions.  Cardiff-based Martin Jones  is well acquainted with matters involving anti-money laundering regulations.

Practice head(s):

Aled Walters

Other key lawyers:

Martin Jones

Key clients



Double Diamond Gaming (Rainbow Casino)

Development Bank of Wales PLC


Admiral PLC


Conexus Group

Raw Entertainment


888 Africa

TCS John Huxley

Inspired Entertainment


Castle Bingo

Work highlights

  • Acting for 888 (Africa) in the establishment of its operations in Africa.
  • Advising Raw Entertainment, which operates the Roobet international casino, on an aspect of its promotion activity with Snoop Dogg.
  • Acting for Bresbet on its application for UK Gambling Commission licences.

Keystone Law

Keystone Law has longstanding experience of assisting with a broad range of issues, including land-based gambling sites, host and software licensing matters for international operators and the use of cryptocurrencies as a form of payment for gambling platforms. The team has a proven track record of acting on licensing review applications, where the client’s licence is at risk of revocation. Richard Williams is well placed to advise skill game clients on how to avoid being regulated under the Gambling Act 2005. Financial services expert Rabya Anwar is equipped to handle jurisdictional expansion matters, while Niall McCann and Stephen Rodd are further key contacts.

Other key lawyers:

Richard Williams; Rabya Anwar; Niall McCann; Lara Robson; Stephen Rodd; Nicholas Tall; Jimmy Desai

Key clients

Verdict MMA Inc

Papaya Gaming Inc

MeritUp Inc

Funfair Technologies Europe Limited

Pura Vida Sunset Services Ltd

Abdullah Qandeel

Zhong Lun Law Firm Limited

Jumbo Interactive Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised MeritUp Inc on the development of its FlipFam football engagement app.
  • Instructed by US MMA pool betting startup Verdict to advise on licensing requirements for its launch in GB.
  • Assisted Papaya Gaming with the analysis of its skill games under the Gambling Act 2005, to establish whether they are regulated gambling.


RPC leverages its expertise in sports, esports, digital and technology matters to handle commercial, intellectual property, data and disputes work. Jeremy Drew co-heads the practice and is a key contact for sports database rights disputes.  Fellow co-head Josh Charalambous assists sports betting companies, B2B betting technology providers, and brands with a wide variety of gaming and betting mandates.

Practice head(s):

Jeremy Drew; Josh Charalambous


‘RPC has a remarkable depth of experience in the gaming and betting sector, with a range of clients and a track record of success in litigating in the sector.’

‘Jeremy Drew has a huge following and is the king of strategy.’

‘Joshua Charalambous is bound for greatness, a really great new addition.’

‘RPC’s gaming practice is unique in its ability to provide clients with a full range of legal services across the sector.’

‘I have been particularly impressed by their investment in and commitment to diversity and inclusion.’


Key clients


Soft Construct



Royal Panda

Game Digital

Work highlights

  • Acting for Soft Construct in relation to High Court proceedings brought by Genius Sports concerning live sports data.
  • Advising a leading esports platform provider on gambling licensing requirements for free to play watch-along prediction games for competitive gaming competitions.
  • Advising GAME in respect of the ongoing operation of the BELONG Esports gaming arenas in the UK.