BHA to modernise and simplify racehorse ownership

Nicky Henderson owners' day

Becoming an owner will be a more simple process thanks to reforms

  PICTURE: John Beasley  

 By Jack Haynes 11:13AM 25 OCT 2016 

THE BHA on Tuesday announced plans to launch a new and long-called-for digital system for the administration and registration of owners, replacing the antiquated system currently in use.

The simplification of ownership types and the consolidation of fees associated with ownership are also part of the sweeping reforms, which have been devised following criticism of the current system.

Charlie Liverton, chief executive of the Racehorse Owners Association (ROA), said: “Owners have long-complained that their first steps on the road to ownership were characterised by red tape and confusing ownership structures followed by numerous fees.”

Through an online hub, which will be supported by a telephone helpdesk, owners will be able to register, update and maintain ownerships digitally, removing the current need to fill out a significant number of paper forms.

The eight different types of ownership currently available will also be streamlined to five: sole, partnership, syndicate, racing club and company.

Fees for the registration and re-registration of colours, the authority to act and VAT, currently paid at different points of the year, will also be aligned to one date in the year once the new system is in place in spring next year.

Fees could be reduced

Richard Wayman, chief operating officer of the BHA, said the changes would help the sport recruit and retain owners and added the regulator hoped to reduce administrative fees in future.

Wayman said: “At the heart of the sport’s growth strategy is making racehorse ownership more attractive and accessible to both new and existing owners. This will require significant progress in a number of areas including ownership administration, where there needs to be much greater emphasis on the customer experience. The initiatives announced today are a first important step on that journey.

“Looking further ahead we would like to get to a position where the administrative costs of ownership are greatly reduced. As we explore how that might be delivered, the changes announced today will address many of the administrative frustrations our consultation told us have been faced by owners for too long.”

Charlie Liverton added: “The ROA is delighted that the planned reforms will greatly reduce these hurdles, ensuring that both existing and new owners can concentrate on the more enjoyable aspects of our thrilling sport.

“Given owners are the single biggest contributors to racing, investment in these reforms is very much welcomed.”

 
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