The sheer size of the UK gambling market makes it appealing to international operators, not to mention the fact that local players have an appetite for gambling. In spite of the strict requirements imposed by the Gambling Commission the number of operators applying for a license is on the rise. The most recent figures highlight the online betting growth in the UK.
Remote casinos and bookmakers thrive in the UK
The online and land-based gambling industries are following divergent paths. Brick-and-mortar operators are struggling to stay afloat, while their online counterparts are thriving and post ever better numbers every year. Punters have slowly but surely migrated from traditional gambling venues to the Internet, where they enjoy better terms, bigger bonuses and unmatched convenience. The trend seems to be irreversible and those who have moved online show no interest in going back.
One of the particularities of the UK gambling market is the fact that many gambling operators have both a land-based and online presence. Punters can place their bets online and cash out their winnings locally, faster than they would normally do. This also has the beneficial effect of projecting an image of confidence, since also having a physical location makes a gambling operator look more reliable. It also helps casinos and bookmakers reach the target audience more effectively through advertising.
Encouraging numbers from the Gambling Commission
Twice a year, the United Kingdom Gambling Commission publishes its highly anticipated statistics about the gambling industry. Each report highlights the steady growth of remote casinos, as opposed to the decline of land-based operators. The percentage at which the industry grows revolves around 4%, driven mostly by sports betting and casino games. Online bingo has been one of the most successful forms of gambling in recent years, with double-digit growth, as it targets a more diverse audience.
The Gross Gambling Yield according to data from the UK casino PlayUK.com is a solid indicator of how the UK gaming industry is doing and the numbers are positive. Even when excluding lotteries, the industry totals more than £10 billion and the number of new players increases every year. The UK's retail sector continues to struggle and many gambling companies had no option but to close shops in 2020. Overall, employment has shrunk across the gambling industry, as online casinos are highly effective and need a smaller and more agile workforce.
The growth of the online gambling industry in the UK is also influenced by the legal changes and the passing of various gaming bills. For instance, the FOBT ruling had a negative impact on the Gross Gambling Yield for the category of slots machines affected by it. Lawmakers need to exercise caution and act with moderation to keep the UK gambling industry safe, without driving punters to offshore operators.
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