What opportunities will the UK Gambling Act review whitepaper open for the UK gaming and sports betting industry? 

After 18 years without change in gambling regulations in the United Kingdom and considerable anticipation and speculation for reform, the UK Gambling Act review whitepaper was published this Spring, signalling some notable changes to the way the online and land based industry will operate.

With the current policy being crafted in the early 2000s, the whitepaper focuses on how gambling will be regulated in the UK moving forward in the current digital age.

The whitepaper is largely aligned with the expectations of the industry, including updates on affordability checks, a review of stake limits and changes pertaining to the Gambling Commission, with an unexpected introduction of a gambling ombudsman that gives customers one point of contact for industry queries.

In addition, the review will positively see the easing of restrictions on the land-based gaming sector, with the potential to increase revenues for UK casinos and the gambling industry.

The highlights of the whitepaper include:

  • Easing of restrictions for the land based industry: Casinos will now be able to offer sports betting, the limits on the number of slot machines in larger casinos will be eased at a 5:1 ratio for slots to table games, whilst smaller casinos can host extra machines on a pro-rata basis dependent on their size.
  • Changes to affordability checks: Detailed affordability checks will be required on players who lose £1,000 within 24 hours, or £2,000 over 90 days, and “passive” checks will be required for those who lose over £125 each month, or £500 per year.
  • A consultation on stake limits: The DCMS will conduct a consultation on stake limits on slots, which may between £2 and £15 per spin, along with introducing lower thresholds for new accounts.
  • A mandatory levy to be introduced for research, education, and treatment (RET) into gambling effects: This mandatory statutory levy will see operators paying a fee to the GB Gambling Commission for research, education and treatment (RET), supporting endeavours to promote a sustainable industry that is consumer protection focused.
  • Creation of an ombudsman for dispute resolution: An independent gambling ombudsman will be created to address complaints from players, allowing the GB Gambling Commission to enact more targeted enforcement, and helping the industry to support vulnerable groups.
  • Supporting the Gambling Commission: The Commission will review design rules for online games, introduce tougher restrictions on VIP schemes to protect those susceptible to gambling harm, explore regulation for prize draws and competitions, and review the Commission’s fees in 2024 to ensure it has adequate funding to enact the whitepaper’s proposals.
  • A review and enhancement of advertising measures: The Commission will conduct a consultation on new proposed controls for customers, which includes the possibility to opt-in for online gambling offers, along with a move to have stronger informational messaging on the harms of gambling.
  • Exploring statutory measures to tackle the black market: The DCMS are looking to make the current voluntary agreement with payment providers statutory, forcing providers to block illegally-operating gambling websites.

So what do the measures in the whitepaper mean for the UK gaming and sports betting market, and how can the industry prepare to maximise the opportunities?

Whilst measures such as additional affordability checks pose hurdles for operators, and the introduction of new levies and a review of Commission fees could see rising operating costs, the easing of restrictions on the land based gaming sector has the potential to drive future UK market growth. This will positively impact both operators and manufacturers of gaming machines with an anticipated increase in the number of gaming machines across casinos, and further opportunity with an increase in sports betting operation in the UK as it will be allowed within casinos.

Whether you are already working with another technology provider and are seeking a new supplier or are completely new to the market, Quixant have the products and expertise you require to get ready for the increase in the number of UK slots, gaming and sports betting machines in the UK.

Our renowned, powerful, and reliable hardware platforms, Software solutions and cabinets and kiosks have been enabling our customers to outsource this aspect with confidence that everything required from a power, performance, security and regulatory perspective for the gaming and sports betting market is covered. Available with both Intel and AMD options, our platforms are suitable for different market and budget requirements and come in varying levels of power and performance. Our partners can choose between Intel or AMD platforms, safe in the knowledge that the Quixant software and service is the same and they can leave the transition and integration to be managed by the experts at Quixant.

The Quixant team are always here to guide and advise customers on the best solutions for their needs and support them throughout their entire product development journey and beyond, helping them to seamlessly integrate all elements of their products, enhance their performance, and focus on delivering the ultimate customer experience. Quixant have offices, operations, and suppliers across the globe, including a dedicated Commercial and Operations team in the UK, and a UK service centre to handle hardware repairs when required which expedites and streamlines the process for customers in this market.

We work closely in collaboration with customers and provide our dedicated customer support portal and resource centre – the Quixant Hub – to ensure that customers always get the products and support they need when they need it. These aspects enable them to get their cabinets, kiosks, and terminals to market faster, making them stand out from the crowd, adding the wow factor that stops customers in their tracks and keeps them coming back.

Find out how you can get ahead of the game with Quixant’s range of next-generation technology and expert guidance and support by arranging a consultation with one of our gaming and sports betting specialists today.

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