As another summer of sports starts, with both the Euro 2016 football championships and Olympic games to enjoy, GBGC gives an update on the state of play within the global betting sector.
Based on research for the new, 11th edition of GBGC’s Global Gambling Report, the global betting (horseracing and sports) market was worth US$ 60.7 billion in gross win in 2015, up 2.4% on the previous year, which had been a World Cup year. GBGC forecasts that the market will grow by 6% in 2016 and by the end of the decade global betting will be worth just over US$ 72 billion in gross win.


Whilst this might seem a sizeable market, in the context of all global gambling, betting only accounts for 13% of the gambling market. This is due mainly to the fact that some major jurisdictions, like the US and China, have very limited betting sectors.

Japan is comfortably the world’s largest betting market, with its vast horseracing betting as well as betting on cycling, motorboats etc. Indeed, several of the world’s leading betting markets have well established horseracing industries and associated betting: Japan, UK, South Korea, France and Hong Kong. The top five markets account for 45% of all global betting gross win.

Europe and Asia are the largest betting regions by gross win (in US$) and these two regions account for nearly 80% of global betting gross win.
The fact that there is often a mismatch between the demand for betting on sports and the regulated betting opportunities available in certain jurisdictions means that betting via the internet has thrived.

Internet betting now accounts for around 36% of all global betting, with a gross win of US$ 22.3 billion in 2015. But more than 40% of internet sports betting gross win is still earned by operators in offshore jurisdictions, as opposed to local licences, although that percentage is falling as more and more jurisdictions require operators to take a local licence.
Nevertheless, the process of regulation is having an impact on the betting value offered to the customer. GBGC did some research into the prices being offered on Euro 2016 in different European markets and found that customers in some countries are getting a lot less value for their money than others. For example, the price for France to win the tournament ranged from 3.75 to 4.33, the higher price giving customers 15.5% more return for a winning bet.

Of GBGC’s sample, the biggest price on England to win the tournament was to be found in Italy – perhaps a reflection of both the beneficial changes to Italy’s betting tax regime at the start of the year and the Italians’ opinion of English football!