Great Britain Now Has The Largest Regulated Online Gambling Market in the World
A new report from the UK Gambling Commission reveals the continued growth of online gambling in the UK, with around 21 million active accounts, and a market share almost double that of all of Europe combined.
The report, which provides figures for the past two years, gives an intriguing insight into trends in the industry and consumer behaviour online.
The total revenue for the gambling sector between October 2015 and September 2016 was £13.8bn, compared to £12.6bn for the previous year, making it the largest regulated market in the world.
Meanwhile, between April 2015 and March 2016, online gambling operators in the UK generated a gross yield of £4.5 billion. Almost half of that came from slots (£1.8bn), and £2.6bn was from other casino games. Consequently, online gambling has a 33% share of the total UK gambling market, compared to only 17% in Europe as a whole.
The annual report also shows steps taken by the UK Gambling Commission to make the online industry safer.
We, and policy-makers, need to understand better the risks posed by online gambling and what might be the most effective methods of regulating this industry to keep up-to-date with the constant evolution that online gambling offers. – William Moyes, UK Gambling Commission Chairman
Almost nine million UK adults said they had gambled online in the four weeks prior to being polled, with around 25 million saying they had gambled at all. More than three million said they had bet on a football match. Approximately 77% of gamblers said they gamble without reading the terms and conditions, with women and those aged over 65 the least likely to do so.
The UKGC has made moves to improve industry standards, protect consumers, and tackle misleading advertising practices by online operators. It recently joined forces with other regulators such as the Advertising Standards Authority and the Competitions and Markets Authority, with the aim to publish a revised strategy early next year.
For Swedish online casino software provider giants, NetEnt, the UK is a land of opportunity. The country is now the company’s strongest performing market, and their CEO says the UK has been a driving force behind their record figures.
Our journey in the UK has only just started, and we have ambitions to deliver further success, investing in technology, people and products. – Per Eriksson, NetEnt CEO. Source: Gambling Insider
Despite the expansion of the online market, traditional land-based gambling has remained steady. The number of UK casinos reduced by one between September 2016 and March 2016 to 147, and the number of betting shops reduced by 1.4% to 8,788 between March 2016 and March 2017.