1. Introduction

2. Bookmaker's Business: How it All Began

3. What are the Possible Problems a Bookmaker’s Office May Face?

4. How Profitable Can a Bookmaker's Business be?

5. Software for Bookmakers

We would talk about the bookmaking business as such, how to open one, what difficulties and expenses to expect along the way, and more. Also, we will definitely tell you about the profitability of the bookmaker business. So make yourself comfortable and enjoy our guide.

How to start a bookmak's business


How to open a bookmaker's business? Probably, you have opened this page after finding it in a search engine query. Well, here are our answers.

Just to start, let us take a look at the global and Russian statistics:

  • the annual turnover is 650 billion dollars, half of which is made by the US and Japan;
  • Russian annual turnover is 350–500 million dollars.

At first, it may seem that bookmakers in our region have not yet reached a high level of demand. However, the Russian statistics, compared to the CIS’s, will surprise you. According to the official data, the annual turnover of all other states of the post-Soviet space is also about 500 million dollars.

If you have ever been to Ukraine or Kazakhstan, you have probably noticed that in these countries you could find a bookmaker’s office almost at every corner. Accordingly, it should be assumed that in most cases, betting business is merely seen as a shady one and does not provide an opportunity to verify truthful information on its income.

In fact, the annual turnover is much higher than the official statistics say. After all, you can gather real information only from legal bookies. Nevertheless, let us not forget about the so-called offshore offices, in which a huge number of betters prefer to play. The demand is considerable, so building up a supply definitely has its pros. However, because of the high level of competition, you will have to try very hard to occupy your niche.

Bookmaker's Business: How it All Began

It was Ancient Greece that has made the betting popular. However, despite the massive size of events, there was no Greek who would have thought of earning a living from it. At least, the historians have not found any mention of this.

On the other hand, the Romans were more enterprising. In the Roman Empire, gladiator and fistfights, wrestling, and such were very popular. Some people who used to call themselves «arganentarii» were accepting bets on the outcome of events and taking their interest from the total amount; the rest was distributed as a prize for the rightly guessed outcome.

Later, they developed something like a modern line with forecasts for the outcome of the competition, in which the margin had been initially invested. Thus, they managed to secure stable incomes for themselves, regardless of the outcome. Over time, the Roman tote was forgotten.

The bookmaker business in its current came to be in 1875. Prior to this, Pierre Oller launched the first race tote in Paris. Today, in the era of global computerisation, even small offices can afford to provide a line with coefficients.

Tote betting as the beginning of a bookmaker's business

What are the Possible Problems a Bookmaker’s Office May Face?

Let us make it clear right away: opening a bookmaker’s office by a franchise will be much cheaper; plus, it will take much less time. To begin with, you will need to negotiate with the franchisee, solve all the formal bureaucratic issues and get down to business.

Alas, at the same time, you cannot do everything you want, as you will have to obey a number of conditions and act in accordance with all the requirements.

If you are aiming to open your own project, let us talk about problems that may await you:

  • Morality

We are not living in the easiest times. Human consciousness is constantly changing. Naturally, positive changes happen as well, for example, the reluctance to look humbly at bad habits and related unproductive expenses. In 2014, a new law on smoking with a number of restrictions came into force. Any heavy smoker understands its importance.

Bookmaking business is a kind of gambling that makes money literally from nothing. Therefore, one should never forget that the legal bookmaking will be in jeopardy as soon as the royalties from the business become lower than the potentially low income gained from consumers who have lost money in a betting shop. After all, people could have bought goods using that money thus contributing to GDP’s growth and economic development of the state.

  • Licensing procedure

To work legally, a business like a bookmaker’s office must undergo a licensing procedure. In the today’s Russian Federation, it is issued by the Federal Tax Service. A great way to save money is by requesting a partnership license, the cost of which usually does not exceed 250 thousand rubles.

Gambling license is essential for a betting business

However, there are also stipulated so-called financial conditions:

  • The authorised capital: 100 million rubles;
  • The assets: 1 billion rubles;
  • A bank guarantee: 500 thousand rubles.

For most start-ups, such amounts are hard to imagine. That is why it is better to pay attention to the option of opening a branch of a popular betting shop. Perhaps, you will not be allowed to do what you want, but you will protect yourself from the potential threats that operators who act independently usually face.

Whatever one may say, a franchise helps to avoid a lot of mistakes and at the same time to reach a decent level of income. Under the contract, the operator is provided with a line and a financial quotes strategy.

  • Investments

We have already specified in the previous paragraph that a huge capital is needed to open your own bookmaking business. Without one, there is no sense in applying for a licence. Moreover, in the future, the numbers will only grow.

The second largest item of expenditure is software. It is the foundation of everything, which you cannot do without if you are aimed at conquering the Internet market segment.

Next, we will take a look at the most interesting bookmaker’s software vendors. We would like to note that the average price of a high-quality platform may reach 50 thousand dollars.

It does not matter whether you work on the Internet or wish open a land-based bookie; you will need an office in any case. It will house all the equipment, a technical support team and other specialists. Depending on the equipment and the selected office room, the cost of this item may vary greatly.

Next, you will need a line with coefficients. In any case, at the initial stage, the creation of your own line is beyond your ability since at least 200 people must work on it. Neural networks have not yet reached the level needed to develop good coefficients on the basis of statistical data, and even more so build statistics independently and analyse sports events.

This moment may come someday, but not now. Nonetheless, real life shows that it is not so difficult to acquire a line: almost all the leading offices are ready to provide it for a fee.

Finally, let us talk about salaries. You will need technical support specialists, analysts and a personal accountant. The problem is that not every accounting firm will undertake the maintenance of a betting shop, so one should act depending on the current state of affairs.

  • Experienced betters

In the betting industry, there are players who manage to earn from the stakes easily. It can be a professional sportsman who perfectly knows the theory of probability and mathematical statistics or simply a gifted person who does not want to waste his talents on a routine office work.

For large offices, this is a real marketing jewel. It is possible to contact such a player and make an agreement on advertising. However, such geniuses have managed to ruin quite a number of beginner entrepreneurs. Therefore, we advise you to limit the maximum bet at the beginning of the journey.

  • The advertising

To win customers for your bookmaker's office customers, you will need to properly advertise it. In today's competitive environment, it is a difficult thing to do, but a real one nonetheless. Almost everything depends on you.

How Profitable Can a Bookmaker's Business be?

To obtain the maximum profit, you will need to look for well-known markets with a low level of competition. Otherwise, you will have to invest considerable amounts of money in an advertising campaign.

According to the most optimistic calculation, most bookmakers have about 15% of their turnover as net income, but in reality, an experienced operator is able to earn up to 40% without deceiving anyone. The bookmaker business is one of the most profitable activities, as many users prefer to make small bets and obviously will not deny themselves such an innocent «vice».

It is important to consider two points:

  1. High coefficients reduce business profits.
  2. High coefficients attract more betters.

In other words, it would be wiser to offer your players more favourable conditions so that he would call his friends, that is, to benefit from the word-of-mouth marketing.

To minimize the risks and reduce losses during the first stages of development, it is worthwhile to use the services of professional analysts who will monitor the workflow and give timely prompts. The gambling is a field of activity where qualified help is needed no less than the air to a living organism.

Software for Bookmakers

  • Betconstruct

An innovative yet time-tested product that consists of a booking line, sports statistics, an agent system, a software for betting points and casino games. Betconstruct line includes 30 thousand monthly events, a convenient administration panel, an advanced security system, and much more. To date, the software will allow you betting on competitions from the world of eSports. The company cooperates with about two hundred betting shops around the world.

  • UnionBet

A young bookmaker managed to quickly gain recognition in the market and recently has begun a global expansion providing its software product on the terms of a franchise agreement.

This is completely legal and officially registered bookmaker’s office, so that its partners can operate legally and never fear the potential blocking of the site. The company provides its partners with accounting, legal advice and human resources.

If you decide to open a ground-based betting shop, Unionbet’s specialists will help you equip the premises, make repairs and do their best to make the excitement-hungry crowds of players come to your office.

  • William Hill

A giant company that has been working in the industry of bookmaking since 1934. Currently, William Hill finances large-scale sports events and is considered one of the most influential firms on the market.

As part of the partnership agreement, the operator provides its franchisee with a complete software package. As a result, a beginner entrepreneur receives a unique software recognized as one of the best in the market.

  • Rub90

Rub90 is a high-quality sportsbook software that greatly contributes to the development and promotion of a booking betting project. A well-known bookmaker provides a wide range of solutions according to the rights of a partnership agreement that allow the maximum coverage of the market.

A manager is assigned to each partner, whom the second can address at any time to solve a problem. There is also a technical support around the clock. The Rub90’s line is distinguished by a huge number of events from the world of sports and beyond.

  • Golden-Race

Golden-Race is a successful software developer. Its products are used by more than 6 thousand betting shops in all corners of the globe. The company has always strived to introduce advanced developments and is now considered one of the most reliable and high-quality suppliers.

Golden-Race provides a full range of services for the organisation of betting shops, from the software package to the back-office. The Golden-Race’s customer has the right to use his own brand for promotion and work under it.

  • Liga Stavok

Liga Stavok guarantees a great many events. A better will be able to put not only on the matches of the most popular sports. Even exotic martial arts, chess and much more are represented here.

It is very easy to become a partner to Liga Stavok. After going through the registration and all the formal procedures, you become a full partner of the company and will be able to expect a decent interest from the profits from the players you attract. The brand has already won some trust and is in high demand among the betters.

  • Unibet

Unibet offers a comprehensive solution combining a bookmaker's office with slot machines, card games, board games, etc. The company is rightfully considered one of the largest providers of gambling.

  • 1xBet

1xBet is a very successful bookmaker in the Russian market. Around one million players steadily makes bets with 1xBet. The company's software has been worked out to the smallest detail, as real professionals have been engaged in the creation of its business. The 1xBet’s software is translated into 36 languages, which gives entrepreneurs the opportunity to enter any markets. All these factors allowed 1xBet to become one of the best enterprises not only in the CIS but all over the world.

  • Inspired Gaming Group

Inspired Gaming Group offers an excellent product for betting on virtual sports, which is the main feat of the company. The software is distinguished by high-quality advanced graphics; it adds a keen sensation and incites the betters to action. In addition, the features of the SSBT product expand the possibilities for betting, making it more exciting.

Betting on virtual sports by Inspired Gaming Group

  • DraftKings

Another major supplier of software for fantasy sports with various types of competitions and other original proposals.

You can open your own betting shop even having a small starting capital. There are a lot of partner programs, and you just need to choose the optimal solution. The vital point is to decide where do you plan to work: on the Internet or the old fashioned way, «on the ground».

If you decide to start your own bookmaking business, the Bett-Market company will be happy to provide you with professional help. It does not matter if you want to buy a franchise, order a website development or get a ready-made establishment: Bett-Market is always at your service.