ASA Adjudication on Isiris Racing Services
Isiris Racing Services
PO Box 17North Seaton
15 February 2012
Number of complaints:
A press ad, in the Racing Post for a betting tipster service, seen on 15 November 2011, stated "WIN FIRST - PAY LATER!! Yes - let your bookmaker pay your ISIRIS annual fees for you. The 2012 annual fee is £1,695 with the remainder of 2011 thrown in for free. Simply pay a £500 deposit to cover our administration costs and then do not pay one further penny of your fees until AFTER you have won a minimum of £1,695 in your own pocket."
Lord David Lipsey, vice-Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Betting and Gaming and member of the Starting price Regulatory Commission, and acting in a personal capacity, challenged whether the description of the £500 payment as "to cover our administration costs" was misleading and exaggerated the costs associated with providing the service.
CAP Code (Edition 12)
Isiris stated they were not prepared to outline what their costs were. They said the ad stated the amount payable and the reader could make a choice as to whether to pay the charge or look elsewhere.
We noted that the "a £500 deposit" was intended "to cover our administration costs", but that the advertisers had not provided any detail relating to the nature of the costs covered by the £500. Without additional information relating to what costs were incurred by the advertisers' administrative process, we considered that some consumers would consider that £500 was a high sum to cover administrative tasks relating to a betting tipster service.
Although we considered that some consumers might understand the claim "a £500 deposit to cover our administration costs" in more general terms, to mean, for example, that the £500 would be specifically used in the running of the business, to cover general running costs and their business outgoings, we nonetheless noted we had not seen any evidence to show what expense the £500 related to and how it was used in the running of the business.
On that basis, because we had not been provided with any further information, or seen any evidence to show that how the payment was used "to cover our administration costs", we concluded that the claim was likely to mislead.
The ad breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rules 3.1, 3.3, 3.4.6 (Misleading advertising), 3.7 (Substantiation), 3.9 (Qualification) and 3.17 (Prices).
The ad must not appear again in its current form.