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   Wednesday, July 17 2024 
The impact of the new UK licensing regime upon online poker market - United Kingdom

Online gambling market in the UK is one of the largest in the world. It occupies 8% of the global market against 37% for European countries (excluding UK) and 10% for the United States. In 2013, the total UK market for online gambling was valued at 2.5 billion pounds. In this figure, online poker itself generated 329 million euros ($ 559 million). In recent months, the gambling commission UKGC has actively worked on awarding poker licenses in the UK. In fact, the commission is gradually stepping to regulate UK poker industry by identifying white and grey/black markets.

The new law (Gambling Act 2014) forces offshore operators to have a UK license to service UK customers with their offers. It is the same for B2B poker operators such as Playtech and Microgaming whereas remote gambling software has to be supplied by UK licensed software companies. However, the new Act does not include a change in tax system but major stakeholders of online gambling market in this nation now focus on the proposed 15 % GGY (15% net poker revenues) tax. The new law should in any case benefit online poker market in the United Kingdom. In Barcelona last week, Jenny Williams (UKGC Commissioner and Chief Executive) clearly stated that she is expecting about 150 license applications in the next few weeks. By October 1st 2014, the UKGC will regulate the majority of gambling operators in the United Kingdom and become the dominant regulator of global online poker.

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