The impact of a global digital gambling and gaming industry on consumer behaviour and its impact on current as well as new business models bring significant new challenges to the regulation of gambling in Great Britain.
U.K. Gambling Commission released its annual report earlier this month
The indications from our 2015 industry statistics are that the online gambling market in Britain generates around £3.48bn (€4.57bn) of Gross Gambling Yield (GGY) per annum – accounting for 28% of the British gambling market, or 37.5% when the National Lottery is excluded.
This makes it the biggest sector in the GB market – ahead of land-based betting – in terms of GGY for the first time.
The online market appears to be continuing to grow rapidly and we expect that trend to continue, albeit not at current rates.
The growth of mobile and tablets usage and social media has also driven the take-up of gamblingstyled games, with their appeal to younger audiences.
Our latest participation survey shows that nearly half the GB population had gambled in the past month, including a third of the population who had participated in National Lottery draws.
Acquisitions and mergers have been a feature of the market over the past year or so, notably Ladbrokes and Gala Coral, Betfair and Paddy Power, and GVC’s acquisiion of Bwin Party – and there is every likelihood that we will see further market consolidation.
Over the last two years we have emphasised to boards and owners of betting and gaming businesses the importance of putting the risks of gambling-related harm and money laundering at the heart of their business strategy.
There is no doubt a very welcome change in attitude in a number of major companies. However, whilst there has been a great deal of activity, it is also clear that much still needs to be done to deliver real impact in reducing the risk of harm and criminal activity.