Some Bookmakers Hit Badly As FOBT Revenues Plummet

The early signs of the new restriction on Fixed odds betting terminals to just stakes of £2 has seen revenues plummet by 40 percent and seen it hit bookmakers hard especially independent establishments.

The governments decision has seen the smaller bookmakers like Dominic Ford with Roar Betting being an example, having to close two out of his three previously owned shops because of these changes.

Bigger bookmakers in the industry like Paddy Power Betfair has said that the impact of the new stake limit would be a decrease of 33 per cent to 43 per cent in gaming machine revenue, which would work out to a cut of £36m to £47m in revenues based on figures from las year's standings.

(Credit Racing Post) Chief Executive Peter Jackson said: "It's very early days but based on what we've seen so far, we think it's more likely to be closer to 43 per cent, which we think is in line with the market."

Other independent bookmakers have also echoed this statement like john Heaton who is Chairman of Scotbet.

(Credit Racing Post) He explained: "We're down almost 40 per cent but with much greater variations in margins so we'll need time to judge the real impact. "It looks like there's been no increase in sportsbook, although with the Grand National and Champions League it's difficult to say. Larger-staking FOBT players have disappeared."

Roar Betting is another bookmaker that has been hit hard by these new regulations in the gambling industry which has left the company with just one betting office left on the south coast and two in London.

He has seen two shops close on April 1st and that coincided with the date of the the stakes going from £100 to £2 on FOBT machines.

(Credit Racing Post) Ford said: "It's the £2 stake.

"We're not making money in those shops – there's not enough headroom when you take away 40 per cent of the FOBT income.

"It's not preventing any harm, it's just preventing gambling."

"It's tougher for those who have worked for me for more than ten years and I've had to make redundant."

Other bigger bookmakers like Ladbrokes Coral have not been effected so much.

(Credit Racing Post) Ladbrokes Coral retail managing director Mark Chambers said: "As expected we've seen a significant impact on our machine business but our shop colleagues have done a brilliant job explaining and educating our customers about the changes, helping to mitigate some of the customer disappointment that has been experienced.

"It's early days but we've seen some encouraging signs on horse racing, building on the boost that we achieved through the successful launch of the Best Odds Guaranteed concession in shops for multi-channel customers.

"Grand National turnover was up year-on-year which was a stellar performance and the Coral Scottish Grand National was not far off last year’s level."