UK Gambling Industry- Important Stats & Trends

Leading statistics portal, Statista recently released a comprehensive report on the UK gambling industry. According to the data, the Gross Gambling Yield (GGY) in the United Kingdom

increased from £8.4 billion (2011) to £14.4 billion (2018). Rules and regulations vis-a-vis online gambling were amended in 2014, allowing for robust growth in the online gaming market. As such, this now comprises a significant share of the UK gambling industry.

UK data suggests that some 100K employees are involved in the gambling industry (2018 figures), most of whom are involved in the betting sector. Most bettors in the UK are between 45 – 64 years of age, with 36.6 million online gambling accounts associated with UKGC (United Kingdom Gambling Commission) licensed operators. Heading into 2019, 91.8% of those registered online casino, sports, poker, and bingo players were active, with £785 million held in online gambling accounts. Great Britain features 8,406+ betting premises with 50,064 employees in the betting sector.

Source: Statista Gambling Industry in the UK – Stats & Facts

The statistics reveal interesting trends among players, particularly as we drill down into specific sectors such as slot machines, remote gaming, casinos, bingo, betting, and arcades. Remote gaming activity has generated a GGY of £5.35 billion for the period under consideration (April 17 – March 18). This figure applies to remote gambling for bingo, casino, and sports betting. Among the many different types of casino games available to legal age players are slots, blackjack, baccarat, roulette, craps, bingo, live dealer, and progressive jackpot games.

Introducing Progressive Jackpot Games

Progressive jackpot games are particularly interesting in that a percentage of every bet contributes towards the progressive jackpot prize pool. The most popular form of progressive jackpot games are progressive slot games. There are 3 broad categories of progressive slots available to players, notably wide area network progressives, stand-alone progressives, and local progressives. The wide area network progressives rank among the most ubiquitous variety, with jackpots rapidly rising to multi-million-pound levels. It is not uncommon to hear of wide area network progressives valued at £1 million – £10 million.

The stand-alone progressives feature ‘jackpot tickers’ on the game, but they are seeded exclusively by players on that particular machine. For many years, the stand-alone progressive was the sole progressive jackpot game at casinos, with jackpots typically less than £10,000. The local progressive jackpot games are commonly found at casinos and online casinos, with exclusive linked jackpots at specific casinos. It is possible to have anywhere from 1 – 12 linked local progressives, or as many as 100 local progressive machines. For the most part, the jackpots are typically under £100,000, and almost always less than £1 million.

Progressive online casino game payouts are determined exclusively by random number generators (RNGs). Contrary to popular opinion, players cannot employ tactics and strategies to increase their chances of success with these types of games. From a theoretical perspective, the odds of hitting a jackpot are akin to those of winning the lottery. The only difference with progressive online casino games is that players are not required to wait days, weeks, or months for the option of playing progressive jackpot casino games. Regardless of the size of the progressive jackpot, there is never a ‘due date’ for a payout to be made. This means that players who rely on myth and superstition are no better served by their beliefs.

All legal-age players stand an equal chance of generating a favourable outcome, provided all the proverbial stars align. The rapid and unprecedented growth of the online gaming industry has facilitated the rapid rise of UK online casino games. Much like their land-based equivalents, online progressive jackpot casino games feed a percentage of every real-money bet into the progressive jackpot prize pool. Depending on the number of players that are participating at any given time, these jackpots can swell and potentially exceed the progressive jackpots at the land-based casinos in Macau, Las Vegas, or Atlantic City.

Casino Listings features the total value of current jackpots available online. At the time of writing (December 2019), a total of $96,056,336 + was up for grabs. Among the many leading progressive jackpot games are: Fairest of them All, Mega Moolah Mega, Funky Fruits, Life of Brian, Jackpot King, Gladiator, Hall of Gods Mega, Aztec’s Millions, and Shopping Spree. With 693 jackpots currently being tracked since June 2009, Casino Listings has reported on some 192,383 wins with over $3 billion paid out in 10 years.  This reputable online gaming portal conducted in-depth study into jackpot odds at online casinos, traditional casinos, and lotteries. The results of the analysis found the following:

  • Lottery games

  • Traditional casinos

  • Online casino progressive jackpots

Jackpot Mechanics

It may come as somewhat of a surprise that the odds of winning the lottery are better in many cases than the odds of winning a Megabucks progressive jackpot game. However, when the odds are 1 in several million, there is such a statistically insignificant likelihood of winning that it doesn’t much matter where you are going to place your bet. On a side note, it’s worth pointing out that a jackpot game differs markedly from a progressive jackpot game. In the latter case, the jackpot rises with each bet that is fed into the game.

Some interesting statistics have been gathered from casino companies over the years indicating that with games like local progressive jackpots, there is a slightly greater probability associated with a favourable outcome if the number of players is limited. If for example there are 1000 players, your chances are 1:1000. If there are just 100 players, your chances are 1:100.

Of course, there is no guarantee either way that the progressive jackpot will be awarded during that specific session of play since the outcomes are randomly generated.

There is no optimal time where you stand a better chance of winning; there is simply mathematical probability which indicates that fewer players tend to bolster your chances, but it is practically improbable that you could ever ascertain the opportune time to play given that online casinos are open to players all over the world, in many different time zones!

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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