Increasing Liberalisation and Consolidation will Drive Online Gambling in the Near Future According to a New Survey

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Unique new report discusses the key trends in online gambling and provides objective analyses

Currently, the online gambling market is awash with new industry trends and issues: liberalisation, consolidation, B2B/B2G, U.S. market, mobile betting, ... to name just a few. But which trends are relevant (and for whom), which ones are just hype, and what are the figures/analyses behind the trends? For the most part, answers to the above questions have been vague and subjective. But now MECN's new report "Online Gambling Trends 2010/2011" sheds some light on the situation with an objective study.

The report analyses some of the most relevant topics in the online gambling market and includes unique insights MECN gathered from a survey of more than 100 market insiders and operators. Martin Oelbermann, director of MECN, points out: "A lot of market analyses of key issues are subjective in nature - in contrast, many of our clients requested from us an open, candid, and objective analysis. We are now meeting the need they expressed with this study".

Among the top drivers likely to shape the online gambling industry in the next 2-3 years is first of all the growing trend toward liberalisation followed by expected increases in consolidations and mergers (see exhibit below).

Exhibit 1: The drivers most likely to shape the online gambling industry in the next 2-3 years - Results of MECN survey - Please contact MECN to receive the graphic

Increasing liberalisation at the top of the list
The liberalisation of online gambling markets is at the top of the list of factors most likely to shape the online gambling industry in the next 2-3 years. This assessment by market insiders is surely influenced by the ongoing discussion about the liberalisation of the U.S. market, the first French licensees having launched their sites a few days ago, and the growth of the licensed online gambling market in Italy.

However, despite this enthusiasm MECN's consultants caution that a liberalised market does not guarantee continuous growth. Although a liberalised market will grow, driven by casual players preferring to play at licensed local sites, the market will be highly competitive. For example, state and local incumbents will likely enter the market, and - as France's PMU and FDJ show - they might be impressive heavyweights that are hard to compete against. Moreover, liberalisation goes hand in hand with regulation, and this comes with taxes, levies, and usually stricter (and costly) requirements. It is thus not surprising that many operators looking for a license are not expecting to make any profit in the first few years, and several large operators (e.g., William Hill) have dropped out of the race in liberalised markets.

Mobile is back
Overall, nearly half of the experts surveyed believe that "new games and product innovation" will most likely shape the overall online gambling industry - with mobile leading the way. Although mobile is still, even years after launch, a niche segment, the result of MECN's survey was clear: mobile gambling was estimated to be the product with the highest growth potential. There are many reasons for this: the iPhone effect, emerging markets might prefer using mobile Internet connection instead of fixed lines, ....

The hype concerning B2B business for operators might already be over

In recent months, many news releases, annual company presentations, ... have discussed the B2B business of operators as a new business segment compensating maturing B2C companies. It seems that the hype around B2B might already have come to an end before it fully got off the ground: only one fourth of the survey participants believe this to be a key driver for the industry in the next 2-3 years.

MECN's new report "Online Gambling Trends 2010/2011"
The report analyses some of the most relevant topics in the online gambling market - such as: liberalisation, consolidation, B2B and B2G, mobile, iPad, live betting, online lotteries, ....

The report also includes unique insights MECN gathered from a survey of more than 100 market insiders and operators. In total, the report has more than 190 pages and 96 graphs/exhibits.

In order to provide such extensive analyses, MECN teamed up with some of the best in the industry, including Santiago Asensi, Mark Balestra, Chris Krafcik, Quirino Mancini, Bradley Vallerius, ...

For more information visit http://www.online-gambling-trends.mecn.net

About MECN
MECN is a network of experts on issues concerning the media and entertainment industry. Together they provide in-depth knowledge, analysis, and advice to global clients.

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MARTIN OELBERMANN
MECN
0049 89 38356785
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