As COVID-9 spread across the world, it leaves havoc everywhere. The economy is one of the biggest elements impacted worldwide, and today we talk about the effects on sports and betting as a whole. Since the coronavirus hit, almost all sporting events have been cancelled, in the hopes of containing the virus and limiting spread. This has left bookmakers struggling, as all their income is generated from sports betting events. With all the major football leagues globally cancelled so is football betting. Other major events that have also been cancelled include the Grand National, Wimbledon and also The British Open. All of these cancelled events are worrisome to bookmakers, and hence a mitigation meeting was held recently to see how a comeback can be secured. How a back up plan can be launched, and if so, quickly.
Towards the end of April 2020, the SBC Digital Summit was held, with some of the key attendees being CEP, bookmakers and also key people from the global betting industry. They all agreed that will the lack of the football betting, the bookies will find it hard to keep afloat. The ‘crisis meeting’ was the best place where company leaders could share best practice on how a comeback can be planned and rolled out.
The UK is one of the biggest countries to be hit with the closure of sports shops. We can all agree that the British Premier League is one of the biggest in Europe, with even some of the teams reaching the tops of the UEFA champions league. With the removal of football betting, the English punter has been neglected from his biggest passion. And that loss of revenue for bookmakers is indeed catastrophic, as some of these shops have been closed off to the public since the early days of March 2020. The Grand National on its own brings in as much as 250Million in bets, want to give a guess how much money is being lost from football betting. More than this, for sure.
On the other hand, online bookmakers’ sites have been more creative, since their platform is still operational. Albeit, sporting events having been cancelled altogether, sites have been wise enough to include virtual sports, betting on politics, and even the coronavirus. The only downside here is that punters like to be familiar with a sport or an athlete for them to bet away in the hopes for a win. Although virtual sports have seen a rise, the punter is still cautious with his bets. And let’s face the truth, nothing beats the religiously weekend football betting slit, more if you add other leagues such as Champions League and League Cups to the mix. The loss is bets cost companies like Ladbrokes and Coral up to 50 Million a month. Not to mention, all of these establishments that are spread across the United Kingdom employ around 100,00 people.
Bookmakers are hoping that the government can help their business financially post coronavirus, since the industry generates a 2.9 Billion annually. But the gambling industry was and will always be frowned about as the taboo subculture, and bookies are still to see if aid will be provided. Their only hope at this time, is that sports events will resume, hopefully shortly and the income will start rolling in gradually. But when will this happen? We have all seen the news lately, that some of the major sports clubs would like the major football leagues to resume, but is this fair for the players themselves? Is this even safe to do at this time when waves of coronavirus are hitting us on a daily basis?
We can all agree that football betting is one of the most impacted sections from the gambling industries. As we see some establishments and businesses trying to rebuild and find a new normal, it is a different story for uk betting sites, and their only hope is that this pandemic leaves us as quick as it has landed and sports events resume swiftly. We all crave our weekly football betting slip, and we are sure that the future will be a bright one, where we can walk into a betting shop and enjoy that small bet on our favorite team or event!