Key Industry Facts & Statistics

“Gambling is a common recreational pursuit and an enjoyable one for many.  Around 70% of Australians participated in some form of gambling last year.”  (Source: Australian Productivity Commission Report on Gambling 2010)

Industry Contribution

  • The online wagering and sportsbetting industry in Australia employs more than 1000 Australians, has over two million Australian customers, pays in excess of $100 million in product fees per annum to racing and sports, and contributes over $100 million per annum in taxes. (Source: Industry Data)
  • AWC members provide betting or wagering services on racing and sport over the internet or by telephone for over 2 million Australians. All members of the AWC are strongly committed to promoting responsible gambling and have a major ongoing commitment to enhancing the integrity of sport.

 Gambling Expenditure

  • Sportsbetting represented just 3%  of Australia’s Total Annual Gambling Spend in Australia in 2013/14, with racing accounting for 13.2%.  In comparison, 52.2% was spent playing the ‘pokies’ in clubs and hotels, 20.7% on casino gaming and 10.9% on lotteries, pools and keno. (Source: Australian Gambling Statistics 31st Edition)

Changing Customer Preferences and Key Structural Shifts in the Online Wagering and Sportsbetting Industry

  • An ongoing shift of wagering spend from traditional offline betting channels (i.e. retail or TAB outlets, on-course bookmakers and with bookmakers over the phone) to online channels (internet, mobile, tablet). This trend is in line with consumer spending patterns in other retail sectors such as books, clothing and electronic goods, which have also seen a very high level of online growth.
  • A move of wagering spend from traditional totalisators to corporate bookmakers and the betting exchange, Betfair and in particular, the shift away from pari-mutuel and pari-mutuel derivative betting to fixed-odds betting
  • Growth of sports wagering in contrast to racing wagering which has seen existing customers substitute betting on racing with betting on sport.

The Illegal Offshore Gambling Market

  • The illegal offshore online gambling market was estimated to be nearing $800 million in 2009. (Source: Australian Productivity Commission Report on Gambling 2010)
  • Despite the prohibitions contained in the Interactive Gambling Act 2001, it is estimated that almost $2 out of every $3 spent by Australians gambling on the internet is with illegal offshore providers on all prohibited forms of gambling. (Source: Australian Productivity Commission Report on Gambling 2010)
  • There are 2,443 online casino and gambling websites available to Australians. (Source: Joint Select Committee on Gambling Reform)
  • H2 Gambling Capital estimated that 14% of Australian expenditure on interactive wagering goes to offshore providers – around $900 million of turnover.  The major impacts of offshore spend are risks to consumers from reduced harm minimization standards of offshore sites and a significant threat to the integrity of sport.

Growth in Wagering Turnover

  • Overall annual growth in wagering turnover has not significantly increased – the past five years has been in line with the growth of the economy, at four to five per cent per annum. Within overall wagering there has been a shift in the channels through which consumers place bets from off-line (on racetracks, in retail TABs and via telephone operators) to online through internets, smart phones and tablets. This trend is no different from the migration to online platforms which is being seen in many other industries such as media, books and recorded music. There has also been a trend of wagering on sports growing at the expense of wagering on racing. (Source: Industry Data)

Incidence of Problem Gambling

  • The incidence of problem gambling is significantly lower for online wagering in comparison to other forms of gambling with the Productivity Commission estimating that 75 – 80% of problem gambling is directly related to the use of poker machines. (Source: Australian Productivity Commission Report on Gambling 2010)