Gambling.com, which recently completed the purchase of the Bookies.com website, has confirmed it is retooling and relaunching the site to focus more exclusively on the US market in sports gambling. The sports gambling market in the United States has exploded. The Supreme Court ruled in May that states had the power to decide for themselves on sports gaming, overturning a 26-year-old federal law. Since the law was overturned, several states have voted to allow sports gambling. Those states include Mississippi, New Jersey, Nevada (where it was already legal), Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Rhode Island and Delaware. Several state representatives have said that they plan to introduce legislation to legalize sports gambling during the 2019 legislative session.
The company now known as Gambling.com began as a blog, and the author was a gamer who loved to gamble in online casinos. He began blogging about interactive gambling sites, giving reviews of which casino websites were best for consumers. He also blogged about casino sites that did not treat customers fairly or did not pay off gamers quickly. The reviews and ratings generated by gambling.com have become very popular, first on the blog, and then on the website. Gambling.com has been able to keep nearly 80 percent of its revenues, which makes the website extremely lucrative.
Gambling.com’s Acquisition of Bookies.com
The purchase of bookies.com cost gambling.com $2.5 million in upfront cash, and the remaining $6 million to be paid within a calendar year from the date of purchase. In all, bookies.com holds 76 different domains managed by bookies.com are now available to gambling.com. While gambling.com has focused on gambling in the United Kingdom, it has expanded its reviews of casinos to neighboring countries as well as the United States. With the acquisition of bookies.com, gambling.com is looking to expand its footprint in gaming. Bookies.com had an emphasis on sportsbooks in the United Kingdom. The site gave comprehensive reviews of sportsbooks and rated them, much as gambling.com rated online casinos. With the new domains, gambling.com intends to take advantage of the burgeoning sports betting market in the US.
Looking to the Future
One of the reasons gambling.com is seeking to move out of the UK market and move into other markets is because of regulation—both in casino gaming and sportsbooks. The UK government has increasingly said it is going to potentially raise taxes on interactive online gaming as well as casino gaming. Fixed-odds-betting terminals have been of particular concern to the government in the UK, and the government has been attempting to regulate the industry. One of the current debates in the UK is whether or not to limit the amount of money players can bet on one spin on the terminal to a little less than $3 per spin, as opposed to the nearly $200 current limit. Increasingly, the UK government is looking to increase regulation and taxation of its gambling businesses to pay for social services for problem gamblers. Gambling businesses in the UK have threatened to leave the country.
In contrast, the US market is undergoing extensive deregulation, especially in the sports gambling market. Businesses are flocking to the US to gain some foothold in what is predicted to be a red-hot market in the years to come. With gambling.com’s acquisition of bookies.com, the business hopes to become affiliated with the legal sportsbook market in the United States. This means that players in states with legal sportsbooks can use the website as a reference. Also, because both gambling.com and bookies.com have established followings in the UK and Western Europe in general, that their professional ratings system and gamer friendly reviews will carry over into the US market.
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