Promotional competitions are competitions in which prizes are awarded by lot or chance in order to promote goods or services. Due to the chance element, these competitions are often categorised as lotteries or gambling. Initially, South African legislation did not make provision for the running of promotional competitions, but this situation changed when the Lotteries Act, 1997 came into force. Currently, promotional competitions are regulated by the Consumer Protection Act, 2008 (CPA).
This thesis examines the regulation of promotional competitions in South Africa. It commences with a background discussion, which touches on the relevant terminology and some sociological aspects. It then considers the consequences of gambling and the need for and nature of regulation, and deals with the marketing and consumer protection contexts. This is followed by a brief overview of the global and South African history of gambling, lotteries and promotional competitions, which includes a discussion of South African case law.
Foreign law relating to promotional competitions in New Zealand and Great Britain is explored in order to compare this to the South African position. This is followed by an examination of the current regulation of promotional competitions in South Africa, including a discussion regarding the interplay between the CPA and the Lotteries Act and a detailed analysis of the CPA’s provisions. The self-regulation of promotional competitions is discussed as well. The concluding chapter of this thesis contains recommended solutions for the problems identified in the analysis of the relevant legislation.