An application for a venue operator’s licence must be accompanied with completed Associated individual and Associated entity forms. Subsequent investigations by the Victorian Gambling and Casino Control Commission (VGCCC) may reveal additional associates who will also be required to complete and submit an appropriate associate form.
Under the Gambling Regulation Act 2003 (the Act), an associate of a person (the first person) is defined as:
- a person who holds or will hold any relevant financial interest, or is or will be entitled to exercise any relevant power (where in right of the person or on behalf of any other person) in the gambling business of the first person, and by virtue of that interest or power, is able or will be able to exercise a significant influence over or with respect to the management or operation of that business
- a person who is or will be an executive officer, whether in right of the person or on behalf of any other person, of the gambling business of the first person
- if the first person is a natural person – a person who is a relative of the first person.
- Persons who may be associates are:
- each director, public officer, chief executive, chief financial officer, committee or board member of the applicant or associated entity
- all committee members or members of the board of management of a club
- partners with a partnership interest of 10 per cent or greater in income or voting entitlements of the applicant or associated entity
- where the applicant or associated entity is a trust, the trustee of the trust. In the case of a corporate trustee, all directors of that trustee company
- trust unit holders or beneficiaries who, by virtue of the Trust Deed, have voting rights enabling them to remove or change the trustee, or to influence decisions of the trustee
- beneficiaries of discretionary trusts who have received 10 per cent or greater of the trust’s income distribution in the last three years
- any person who could exercise a significant influence over or with respect to the management or operation of the gaming machine business
- any individual considered to be an associate by the VGCCC.
The approval of an associate lasts for the life of the current venue operator’s licence. An approved associate may, within the life of the current venue operator’s licence, be associated with respect to more than one approved venue operator. However, there are restrictions on being associated with some of the other licences granted under the Act. For example, you cannot be an associate of a venue operator and an associate of a person that is on the Roll of Manufacturers, Suppliers and Testers.
As an associate, you will also be given a set of directions that give you an ongoing responsibility to notify the VGCCC of specified changes in your situation.
Whenever a specified change takes place, you must give written notice to the VGCCC within 14 days of the change taking place. If you do not notify the VGCCC of a specified change, you may be prosecuted and fined up to 60 penalty units.
Approving new associates
Through its nominee, a venue operator must ensure that a person does not become an associate before the VGCCC approves the appointment in writing.
This applies, but is not limited to, business partners, executive officers – such as a director, secretary, committee member or part of a management body – and significant shareholders of the venue operator. For further advice on who may be considered an associate, please contact the VGCCC.
Any new person associated with the venue operator must not play a role in the management or operation of gaming at the venue until they are approved by the VGCCC.