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Portrait of David Zeffman

David Zeffman

Head of Gambling and Sport

CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP
Cannon Place
78 Cannon Street
United Kingdom
Languages English

David has been one of the leading lawyers in the UK media sector for over 30 years and has extensive experience providing strategic, commercial and regulatory advice to clients in the gambling, sport and television sectors. He has been involved in many of the major transactions that have taken place in these sectors, including the launch of several television channels and the sale of media rights to some of the world's biggest sporting competitions.

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"Offers significant experience handling an array of transactional and regulatory matters in gambling sector. He is praised for his "demeanour and knowledge" and "is a master at assembling an expert team, both internally and cross-border, to handle very complicated matters with ease"."

Chambers, 2022

"He is a pleasure to work with. He understands the racing and gambling industry inside out and also understands the commercial requirements, so is able to advise accordingly."

Chambers, 2022

"David Zeffman is one of the most impressive senior lawyers I have worked with. He is clear, logical, decisive and quick."

Chambers, 2022

"David Zeffman is top of the game in the gambling law context. He is at the forefront of gambling industry developments."

Legal 500, 2022

"David Zeffman is a figure of prominence within the market and has advised on sales of media rights for some of the largest global sporting competitions."

Legal 500, 2022

Relevant experience


  • Gamesys on a range of commercial, regulatory and corporate matters including: the sale of its JackpotJoy and other brands to Intertain for an initial payment of GBP 425.8m; advising on its online gaming partnership with the New Jersey casino Tropicana; the acquisition of Virgin Games; and Gamesys’ partnership with Metric Gaming to launch its sportsbook offering.
  • The Gibraltar Betting and Gaming Association on its legal challenges to the UK Government’s reform of the taxation of remote gambling services and to the introduction of place of consumption licensing and regulation in Britain.
  • GVC with regulatory advice in the context of its bid for bwin.party Digital Entertainment Plc, as well as providing support during the due diligence process running-up to the successful bid made by GVC for bwin.party.
  • Tote Media Limited, (established by Betfred owner and chairman, Fred Done) on its deal that enabled the Great Leighs racecourse to reopen.


  • The ECB on its GBP 1.1bn sale of the UK media rights to English cricket from 2020-2025.
  • ICC on its global media rights tender, bidding and evaluation process for 18 tournaments between 2015 and 2023.
  • The Government on the future funding of British horseracing following the decision of the European Court of Justice in the William Hill v BHB database rights case.
  • FIFA on the worldwide sale of media rights to the 2010 and 2014 World Cups.
  • Setanta Sports, SingTel, Sky Italia, Dentsu and many others on their acquisition of rights to broadcast Premier League football.


  • The launch and/or subsequent operations of many television channels since the launch of satellite television in the 1980s including MTV Europe, VH1, FilmFour, E4, AtTheRaces, Bloomberg and Eurosport.
  • The set up, funding, launch and all activities of the DTT pay television platform Top Up TV.
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Memberships & Roles

  • Member - The Editorial Board of World Online Gambling Law Report and World Sports Law Report.
  • Member - International Masters of Gaming Law.
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  • 1980 - MA Jurisprudence,  Brasenose College, Oxford
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Loot boxes will not be reg­u­lated (yet)
Fol­low­ing a 22-month Con­sulta­tion, the gov­ern­ment has de­cided that loot boxes in video games will not be banned in the UK un­der the Gambling Act or reg­u­lated through oth­er le­gis­lat­ive changes. In­stead...
CMS Gambling Con­fer­ence 2022
Dav­id Zeff­man, Head of Gambling and Sport at CMS, gives his open­ing re­marks on top­ics such as the up­com­ing Gambling White Pa­per (in­clud­ing when it is likely to be pub­lished), the mor­al pen­du­lum of gambling reg­u­la­tion and how the reg­u­lat­ory land­scape has shif­ted over re­cent dec­ades. Dav­id also dis­cusses oth­er re­cent de­vel­op­ments such as the chan­ging role of the Gambling Com­mis­sion and the his­tory and back­ground of the gov­ern­ment’s most re­cent gambling re­view, in­clud­ing its aim of strik­ing a bal­ance between the free­dom of the in­di­vidu­al and pro­tect­ing vul­ner­able people.
ASA rules on three Paddy Power ads
On 15 June 2022, the ASA pub­lished its rul­ings on three sep­ar­ate ads for Paddy Power. The ASA held that one ad, which was shown on TV and video-on-de­mand ser­vices (VOD), breached the BCAP Code and the...
CMS Gambling Con­fer­ence 2022
We are pleased to be host­ing the CMS Gambling Con­fer­ence in our Lon­don of­fices once again this year. With DCMS due to re­lease their white pa­per on the Gambling Act Re­view any day now, the con­fer­ence is...
ASA rules that ads with new "Hot" or "Cold" fea­ture must be re­moved
On 04 May 2022, the Ad­vert­ising Stand­ards Au­thor­ity (ASA) ruled that Skill on Net Ltd (“Skill on Net”) must re­move a num­ber of ads for the ‘Play­OJO’ on­line casino. Three is­sues were in­vest­ig­ated...
What the High Court judg­ment in the Longley V Paddy Power case means for...
Case Sum­mary and Ana­lys­is: Longley v PPB En­ter­tain­ment & Ors The Facts The case con­cerned the words ex­changed between a Paddy Power cus­tom­er and a tele­phone bet­ting op­er­at­or, in which a £1,300 stake...
Step change for gambling ads
As part of its con­tinu­ing re­sponse to GambleAware’s Fi­nal Syn­thes­is Re­port on the ef­fect of gambling mar­ket­ing on un­der-18s and vul­ner­able adults, the Com­mit­tee of Ad­vert­ising Prac­tice (“CAP”) has...
Ex­perts in Gambling Law
The gambling in­dustry is con­stantly in a state of change. While reg­u­lat­ory lib­er­al­isa­tion is cre­at­ing new op­por­tun­it­ies in some jur­is­dic­tions, tight­en­ing le­gis­la­tion is clos­ing down av­en­ues in oth­ers...
Gambling shorts video series
Latest de­vel­op­ments in gambling reg­u­la­tion glob­ally
The me­dia and cli­mate change
How is the me­dia sec­tor ad­dress­ing the cli­mate chal­lenge?
Ded­ic­ated En­ergy & Cli­mate Change prac­tice
With more than 450 law­yers in 75 of­fices across the globe our En­ergy and Cli­mate Change prac­tice is one of the largest of its kind. It was foun­ded on ground-break­ing work design­ing and im­ple­ment­ing mod­ern en­ergy mar­kets and is now at the fore­front of de­vel­op­ments on en­ergy trans­ition, re­new­ables and the vari­ous re­sponses to the cli­mate crisis. From ad­vising on cli­mate change strategy, new tech­no­lo­gies, risk and dis­putes, to en­vir­on­ment­al reg­u­la­tion, Power Pur­chase Agree­ments, and real es­tate and in­fra­struc­ture pro­jects, we ad­vise cli­ents op­er­a­tion­ally and stra­tegic­ally. Our track re­cord in­cludes: Ad­vising on the UK’s most ad­vanced car­bon cap­ture pro­ject in the UK’s first zero-car­bon in­dus­tri­al cluster. BP, Eni, Equi­nor, Shell and Total have formed a con­sor­ti­um and as­sumed lead­er­ship of the Net Zero Teesside Pro­ject, pre­vi­ously known as the Clean Gas Pro­ject.Ad­vising product man­u­fac­tur­ers in re­la­tion to sus­tain­ab­il­ity laws for on the launch of new broad­cast and stream­ing devices.Ad­vising broad­cast­ing and me­dia pub­lish­ing com­pan­ies in re­la­tion to Stream­lined En­ergy and Car­bon Re­port­ing and the En­ergy Sav­ings Op­por­tun­ity Scheme.Ad­vising vari­ous private equity funds, banks and large in­ter­na­tion­al man­u­fac­tur­ing and real es­tate or­gan­isa­tions such as Columbia Thread­needle In­vest­ments, Amet­ek, and John La­ing In­fra­struc­ture Fund on en­ergy ef­fi­ciency, car­bon and re­lated re­port­ing ob­lig­a­tions across the EU.Ad­vising ma­jor banks, in­surers and as­set man­agers on prin­ciples likely to un­der­pin reg­u­lat­ory frame­works in­clud­ing, EU Ac­tion Plan for Fin­an­cing Sus­tain­able Growth, Fin­an­cial Sta­bil­ity Board’s Task Force on Cli­mate-re­lated fin­an­cial dis­clos­ures, LMA Green Loan Prin­ciples, ICMA Green Bond prin­ciples.
Get­ting the mes­sage across
For me­dia com­pan­ies, the twin re­spons­ib­il­it­ies of work­ing to­wards net zero and of con­vey­ing the im­port­ance of that mes­sage to their view­ers, read­ers and con­sumers re­quires a care­fully cal­ib­rated ap­proach. In a sec­tor gen­er­ally char­ac­ter­ised by a high level of com­pet­i­tion, the level of co-op­er­a­tion and col­lab­or­a­tion between the ma­jor par­ti­cipants serves as a role mod­el for oth­ers to fol­low.Glob­al suc­cess at COP26 will ul­ti­mately be judged by gov­ern­ments’ col­lect­ive ef­forts to achieve their goals. Sim­il­arly, the me­dia sec­tor may well be judged by its abil­ity to com­mu­nic­ate and per­suade people to change their be­ha­viour. It is a re­spons­ib­il­ity they seem well-equipped to man­age and one that CMS is act­ively en­gaged in help­ing with.