UK Remote Gambling Yield Falls Despite Operator Turnover Increase
The UK remote gambling market has seen a decline in the gross gaming yield for the first time. A figure of £5.3bn represents a drop of 0.6%, which equates to a loss of £34.2m from the previous year. Betting was the hardest hit sector, in which a 10% fall in gross gaming yield saw operators revenue drop by nearly £200m.
Of the five main sectors of betting, betting exchange, bingo, casino and pool betting; only casino gross gaming yield had increased from April 2017 – May 2018, rising from £2,936.98m to £3,113.07. This number represented a 6% growth year-on-year figure.
Driving the casino growth was blackjack which rose from £50.44m to £216.20 an increase of 328.62% alongside roulette which went from £109.93m to £448.23 which also represented a growth rate over three-times at 307.74%.
Slots saw a modest increase of 5.79% on GGY increasing from the 2018 figure of £2,002.10m to £2,118.18m, but the slots market is still the largest revenue generator. In the betting sector, only two sports saw an increase in the GGY; cricket revenue increased from £31.65m to £37.16m which is a rise of 17.40% and dog racing increased from £55.06m to £56.66 a 2.9% growth rate on 2018 numbers.
There were declines in all other betting markets; football £991.20m (down 4.54%), golf £14.21m (down 2%), horses £552.06 (down 15.03%), tennis £120.72m (down 16.25%), virtual £68.59m (down 12.55%) and other markets (novelty, politics etc.) £221.33 (down 13.86%).
Financial forecasting, scenario analysis and impact assessment company Regulus Partnersnoted that the results were down to several known factors; these include customer-friendly results in both racing and football and the impact of promotions such as Sky Bet’s Cheltenham free bet offer. However, a spokesman for Regulus Partners admitted the figures were disappointing for the industry, saying;
However, this is still a big drop in betting, especially given the ‘knowns’ of the public market in a highly consolidated sector.– Spokesperson, Regulus Partners
An interesting figure included in the results was the number of people employed in the industry, that figure rose from 9,600 to 9,900 an increase of 3.125%. This increase is despite fears that the maximum stake reduction of FOBT’s would hit employment numbers in bricks and mortar bookmakers, most of which have online operations. Total gambling yield for the entire industry (including land-based) was £14.4bn for April 2018 to March 2019, a fall of £46.4m, which is a 0.3% drop.