The online gambling and betting business is growing at a fast pace and the various global economic crises don’t seem to be putting a brake on it.
The widespread use of handheld devices such as mobile phones and tablets has made it very easy for people to access the internet for entertainment and in consequence, this has been a growth area for online gambling companies.
Companies that have been quick in adapting to this change have shown the best revenue growth.
The business has been growing at a steady rate every year and is expected to hold single digit rates of increase for the following four years as well.
The size of the industry is estimated at $30 billion globally, and this has caused governments to start looking at regulating it.
Another interesting development in the industry is that many companies have joined together in order to increase their competitiveness.
Companies are eager to offer customers the most attractive bouquet of services since customers themselves are becoming very discerning.
Therefore, it made perfect sense for the Canada based gaming company, Amaya to acquire Rational Group for a deal that amounts to almost $5 billion, in which they got Full Tilt Poker and PokerStars, two immensely popular sites that have lots of customers.
There have been many more acquisitions of the same type. While a well-established company such as William Hill has been able to show double digit growth figures, others have had to make do with modest growth, but growth nonetheless!
Online gambling is biggest in Europe and this industry is therefore highly regulated here. This is very good from the point of view of the customers since increased regulations leave very little room for foul play.
European countries such as France, Spain and the United Kingdom are the biggest markets for sports betting.
The Italians, however, tend to have a marked preference for casino games.
Russia has not legalised online gambling and betting. As a result, there are calls for a mechanism for self-regulation there, especially when it comes to online poker.
The situation is entirely different in Asia where online gambling is deemed illegal in most countries even though Asians are enthusiastic gamblers.
Online gambling is absolutely forbidden in Singapore whereas the South Korean and Chinese governments have been cracking down on the many illegal sites that cater to the immense demand in those countries.
Australia is one of the exceptions in that region, as a result of which there are many companies that offer high quality gambling here.
Only three states in the United States permit online gambling so far, although the prospect of bringing this large source of income under the taxman’s radar is prompting other states to loosen their existing regulations.
Some South and Latin American countries are also planning to bring in legislations to legalise and regulate gambling.
In Africa, South Africa already earns a tidy sum from land based gambling. However, the government is not planning to make online gambling legal for quite some time yet.