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Irvine will leave SIS to establish consultancy

31 March 2015

BETTING shop services provider SIS is to lose one of its most senior figures when George Irvine departs at the end of the year to set up his own consultancy. 
Irvine, managing director of SIS Betting and International, and the longest-serving member of staff at the company, said yesterday he had loved “every minute of the job”, but he will leave on December 31 in a move that will surprise many in the industry. 
SIS has been going through a period of considerable change in recent years, with a number of high-profile members of staff leaving. Irvine himself took over his current role from Phil Siers, who left for Betfred in 2012 and was soon followed by SIS Betting director of operations Brent Dolan and betting controller Paul Ritchie. The company has also been attempting to diversify its operations. 
Irvine said yesterday: “I’ve decided this is the right time to take on something different, use the expertise and contacts I’ve built up and see where that takes me. I love the business and the people within it, and I know I still have a lot to offer with my knowledge of retail, on course, TV and the international side. 
“In the meantime I will continue working as a consultant on special projects for the chairman [Roger Devlin]. My role is to be split internally, with the likes of David Bradshaw taking on UK racing responsibility.” 
Irvine, 62, will have been with SIS for 29 years in November. He had been with Extel for a short period after leaving Coral in 1986. 
He continued: “I had previously been trading and PR director at Coral, so have seen the business from every side. Of course there have been headaches, but that’s part of any day-to-day business. 
“Our first broadcast was to have been from Chester on May 5, 1987, but there was a dispute over money – some things never change – and a delay, and our first race came from Hackney Wick.” 
Irvine added: “I’m looking forward to these next nine months with SIS, then going off on my own. I’m happy to discuss ideas with anyone.”

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