Gaming Industry For Ukraine fundraiser edges closer to £250,000 goal
Since its launch last week, the “Gaming Industry For Ukraine” initiative has raised £191,957 in funds.
Betsson Group is the largest donator so far having pledged a total of £50,000, while Games Global and Microgaming both donated £10,000.
Alexandre Tomic, the founder and chief executive of gaming business Alea, also pledged £10,000, while former industry professional Jonas Ornstein donated £7,500 to the initiative.
Other contributors include OLBG, Better Collective, Just for the Win, Enteractive, Funfair Games, FSB Technology, Sports Media Holdings, Fast Track, Cash Magnet, Green Jade Games, Continent8 Games, Clarion Gaming, Beyond Play, SBC and VIXIO, among many others.
All proceeds will go to Choose Love’s Ukraine Crisis Fundraiser, a project to support people displaced by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which aims to raise £2.5m and has already drawn £1m in pledges.
“It is fantastic to get so many big companies on board as the gaming industry comes together to raise the funds for the Choose Love charity,” Gaming Industry For Ukraine organiser Karolina Pelc said. “The industry has been extremely supportive of our efforts as we look to help our friends in Ukraine during this difficult time.”
Choose Love added: “Last week, as your donations continued to come in, we had a team of two on the ground to understand what is needed by all those in and fleeing Ukraine and build connections with teams responding…
“There are two broad strands to where funding is going – emergency response, and longer-term support and capacity building. We are working to ensure that both of these strands reach services in Ukraine and in the surrounding countries.
“We are distributing funds to partners operating in Ukraine, and in surrounding areas (Romania, Moldova and Poland), and will be updating you over the coming days with more detail.”
Over the past week, a number of gambling businesses have cut ties with Russian clients in response to the invasion of Ukraine.
Genius Sports Group suspended operations in Russia and Belarus, while online gambling operator LeoVegas halted all betting on domestic Russian and Belarusian sports.
Parimatch Tech also said that it would withdraw its franchise from Russia in response to the ongoing invasion of Ukraine. The Parimatch brand was founded in Ukraine in 1994 and the main development centre of Parimatch Tech is in the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv.
Aspire Global also terminated its contract with Sports Lotteries LLC, operator of the Russian National Lottery, due to a “different view of the business”.
Meanwhile, Aristocrat Leisure said it had helped more than two thirds of employees and their families from Ukraine-based business units of its Pixel United mobile social gaming division amid the ongoing invasion of the country by Russia.
Content developer Playson also paid a special tribute to its staff in Ukraine for their efforts, revealing some employees has signed up to join Ukraine’s armed forces to fight.