If you’ve even considered placing a bet on sport, you’ll know that the world of sports betting is a divided one. There are those who believe that sports betting is a form of gambling, and hence, should be prohibited. But there are also those who believe that it is a form of entertainment, much like watching a game. So which position do you take?
Most people are aware of the controversies surrounding sports betting. But what they don’t realize is that the industry does not figure prominently in the headlines for other reasons. Namely, that the majority of the action takes place outside the UK. And it is here, in the countries where sports betting is legal, that the industry has grown and flourished.
Growing A Multi-Billion Dollar Industry
The UK has always been a bit of a special case when it comes to sports betting. Not only was it the birthplace of cricket and tennis, but it was also the home of many professional sports teams, not to mention the fact that the atmosphere in British sports grounds is, generally, quite lively.
However, with the advent of the EU referendum and the decision to leave the EU, it’s quite clear that the UK no longer figures prominently in the international sports betting scene. Which is exactly where the opportunity lies.
The UK’s exit from the EU has led to a seismic shift in the way businesses, especially those in the gambling industry, must prepare for life after Brexit.
Because of the relatively small size of the sport market in the UK, especially when compared to other European countries, the UK’s exit from the EU has opened the doors to a considerably larger market. One which has great potential for growth.
The Biggest Outdoor Sporting Events
If you’re a fan of the great British outdoors, you’ll no doubt be aware of the many sporting events and festivals which take place throughout the year. From football matches, to tennis tournaments, to horse racing, to even rugby games, there’s something here for everyone. Not to mention the fact that many of the events, especially in the summer, are free.
Just one look at this year’s sports calendar and you’ll know that there’s no shortage of outdoor sporting events. But which ones are the biggest? Well, that depends on who you ask. But one thing’s for sure: it won’t be the ones which take place in the UK.
The British are famous for their love of rugby, and rightly so. The sport is incredibly popular here, especially as a result of the popularity of the national team, which boasts a fan base known the world over. But while the Six Nations is undoubtedly the biggest event on the sporting calendar, it’s not the only one. Especially as the game itself is such an integral part of the culture here, that fans will often turn up for matches even when there is no prize money at stake. Something which doesn’t happen very often in other countries.
More Than Just Cricket And Tennis
If the name Peter Winterton rings a bell, then it’s probably because he’s the founder of one of the most successful sports betting companies in the UK. However, Winterton doesn’t just limit his business to cricket and tennis. In fact, for a long time, that was all he did. But it was the stuff of his youth, and it inspired him to found a business which offered diverse sports betting markets.
Nowadays, however, Winterton’s agency, PWC, offers a cornucopia of sporting events, all of which can be accessed via an app, or through a website where you can place your wagers. Not to mention the fact that many of PWC’s sports are available at a reduced price, if you’re a new customer. Hence, the name Betting For Free.
The Appeal Of Mobile Gaming
Mobile gaming has transformed the way we all consume games. Gone are the days of tedious, convoluted point-and-click adventures designed for touch-screens. Today, games are more accessible, easier to play, and, generally, much better. And you know what? The greater the reliance on mobile gaming, the greater the appeal. Especially as it means you can play anywhere, at any time.
Whether you want to play on the go, or on your TV screen at home, mobile games provide instant entertainment anywhere, at any time. With no installation required, you can be sure that anyone can play. Which is why mobile gaming holds such great appeal to the general public.
Thanks to the ever-increasing reliance on mobile gaming, coupled with the lucrative nature of the industry, a growing number of entrepreneurs are eyeing a slice of the ever-expanding action.
But the UK isn’t the only European country in which sport is becoming big business. In fact, Portugal and the rest of the EU have, for years, been a land of opportunity for entrepreneurs in the gaming sphere. With generous tax breaks and an open door policy towards overseas investment, it’s no surprise that a lot of top-notch sportsbooks have set up camp in Portugal. Which is great for business, but not for the competitors. As more and more offshore operators enter the market, the smaller, domestically-run books are struggling to stay in business.
The Rise Of The Asian Tandem
Just as with a lot of other industries, the online betting world is gradually migrating to Asia. However, it isn’t just the smaller books which are closing down, as the big-name operators have followed suit. Especially in the wake of the financial crisis which hit many of the western world in 2008, fewer people were able to gamble. So, while the appetite may have been there, the available markets weren’t.
But things are slowly changing. As the lockdown measures which were implemented to contain the COVID-19 pandemic began to be eased, people around the world (and especially in the UK) began craving for some excitement. Especially with the summer now upon us, it was the perfect time for the gambling industry to flourish.
As the appetite for sport grew, so too did the demand for places to score affordable and accessible bets. Which is why the Asian continent, and especially, China, have become such a force to be reckoned with in the sports betting world. Just take a quick glance at the various Chinese search terms which are now available, and it’s easy to see why. With relatively cheap rates of internet access and mobile phone usage, it’s the perfect breeding ground for online betting entrepreneurs.
However, it’s not quite that simple. China is a huge country, with an incredibly large population. Which means there’s a lot of competition, as well as a healthy appetite for entertainment. It also means there’s a lot of chance for scams and unfair practices. Which is why it’s essential to do your research online, before committing. Especially when it comes to placing a bet on sports, as casinos and betting companies all over the world attempt to fleece unwary punters of their hard-earned cash.
The Bottom Line
There’s a lot more to sports betting than most people realize. Not only does it involve watching games, and possibly participating in them, but it also entails analyzing teams, players, and stats, all of which can be quite addictive. Especially as it allows for a relatively easy way to profit from one’s knowledge and skill. Which is why many people are drawn to it, despite the fact that it is often considered to be a form of gambling. More and more people are discovering that there’s a lot more to sports betting than meets the eye.