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Author Topic: UK Gambling Commission says UK based sites need a license!  (Read 11509 times)
vennali
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June 30, 2015, 05:06:05 AM
 #101

Do you know the price of an UK license?

I am pretty sure it is extremely expensive so that those casinos can't afford and won't buy the license, I know in Phillipphines first cagayan gambling license costs 50000 USD to get the license, and other expenses are excluded from that license. Those best casinos have it, like bodog Asian, m88 casino, and so forth.

Now that Philipphines' license is expensive, UK gambling license must be more expensive than it, maybe costs 1 million USD? Best sportsbooks and casinos like WilliamHill, bet365, ladbrokes have UK license, which are all public companies.

It is definitely going to be a big amount which would probably surpass their revenue as most of the bitcoin
casinos have major competitors.

I did some searching and found some details, but it varies a lot and there is also an annual fees.

http://www.gamblingcommission.gov.uk/FAQs/Getting-a-licence/what-are-the-total-costs.aspx

http://www.quora.com/How-much-does-it-cost-to-get-an-online-gambling-license

Most of the bitcoin casinos probably don't see a massive revenue just from UK customers, and can probably bank on the use of TOR  than spend that amount on gambling licenses(which in future could become a problem for other countries as well )


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June 30, 2015, 05:21:43 AM
 #102

Do you know the price of an UK license?

I am pretty sure it is extremely expensive so that those casinos can't afford and won't buy the license, I know in Phillipphines first cagayan gambling license costs 50000 USD to get the license, and other expenses are excluded from that license. Those best casinos have it, like bodog Asian, m88 casino, and so forth.

Now that Philipphines' license is expensive, UK gambling license must be more expensive than it, maybe costs 1 million USD? Best sportsbooks and casinos like WilliamHill, bet365, ladbrokes have UK license, which are all public companies.

It is definitely going to be a big amount which would probably surpass their revenue as most of the bitcoin
casinos have major competitors.

I did some searching and found some details, but it varies a lot and there is also an annual fees.

http://www.gamblingcommission.gov.uk/FAQs/Getting-a-licence/what-are-the-total-costs.aspx

http://www.quora.com/How-much-does-it-cost-to-get-an-online-gambling-license

Most of the bitcoin casinos probably don't see a massive revenue just from UK customers, and can probably bank on the use of TOR  than spend that amount on gambling licenses(which in future could become a problem for other countries as well )


You are right, thanks for your great links, it seems that casinos need to pay over several million dollars to get the UK gambling license according to the second link(my estimation is roughly correct), it is extremely expensive, and no btc casinos or seldom casinos can afford it.
vennali
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June 30, 2015, 06:46:46 AM
 #103


You are right, thanks for your great links, it seems that casinos need to pay over several million dollars to get the UK gambling license according to the second link(my estimation is roughly correct), it is extremely expensive, and no btc casinos or seldom casinos can afford it.


It actually got me wondering that how do big sportsbooks like Bet365 manage to pay that amount only for UK , specially when it also involves annual fees to be paid by them

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June 30, 2015, 08:32:11 AM
 #104


You are right, thanks for your great links, it seems that casinos need to pay over several million dollars to get the UK gambling license according to the second link(my estimation is roughly correct), it is extremely expensive, and no btc casinos or seldom casinos can afford it.


It actually got me wondering that how do big sportsbooks like Bet365 manage to pay that amount only for UK , specially when it also involves annual fees to be paid by them

Yeah, wondering that too. IMO should be over 10 million USD to pay the license per year(I am not sure how many licenses bet365 has), but their profits are the best in the world, the license money is a piece of a cake compared to profits.

I remember the revenue of bet 365 is 400 million GBP(read from wikipedia), it is very very unbelievable profit cos the profit of bet365 is even higher than some Africa countries' GDP.
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July 07, 2015, 02:37:55 PM
 #105


You are right, thanks for your great links, it seems that casinos need to pay over several million dollars to get the UK gambling license according to the second link(my estimation is roughly correct), it is extremely expensive, and no btc casinos or seldom casinos can afford it.


It actually got me wondering that how do big sportsbooks like Bet365 manage to pay that amount only for UK , specially when it also involves annual fees to be paid by them

Because bet365 (and all other major UK bookmakers) make a truckload of money from offering poor odds and limiting players. This is what's so appalling about the loss of bitcoin sportsbook operators - it means the average British bettor will lose money in the long run. And even if the btc bookies were to buy the license, they would have to use these same tactics just to break even

Best BTC sportsbook IMO: | nitrogensports.eu - best odds, good poker and prop bets
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July 13, 2015, 07:05:10 PM
 #106

Wanted to chime in here, Chris Sullivan also sent us the letter on June 15th, 2015. We've replied back asking him to clarify as we do not use any 'financial institutions' to process any UK-based transactions, to which he sent another pdf email with the 'money's worth' response today.

We've emailed him back with our statement that we do not officially service any UK-based residents as our deposits are anonymous and we do not monitor IPs. We have also told him we would consider paying for the license if he accepted BTC, and to please let us know the price of said license as we operate exclusively in bitcoin and do not have sterling for him.

Last time he/his agency took a month to reply. I'll keep you guys posted.

Adam

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July 13, 2015, 07:46:56 PM
 #107

Wanted to chime in here, Chris Sullivan also sent us the letter on June 15th, 2015. We've replied back asking him to clarify as we do not use any 'financial institutions' to process any UK-based transactions, to which he sent another pdf email with the 'money's worth' response today.

We've emailed him back with our statement that we do not officially service any UK-based residents as our deposits are anonymous and we do not monitor IPs. We have also told him we would consider paying for the license if he accepted BTC, and to please let us know the price of said license as we operate exclusively in bitcoin and do not have sterling for him.

Last time he/his agency took a month to reply. I'll keep you guys posted.

Adam

With them taking a month to reply, doesn't really look like its a serious issue to them . It might just be a warning to atleast have half of the sites stop accepting UK customers which indeed have.
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July 13, 2015, 09:03:04 PM
 #108

Wanted to chime in here, Chris Sullivan also sent us the letter on June 15th, 2015. We've replied back asking him to clarify as we do not use any 'financial institutions' to process any UK-based transactions, to which he sent another pdf email with the 'money's worth' response today.

We've emailed him back with our statement that we do not officially service any UK-based residents as our deposits are anonymous and we do not monitor IPs. We have also told him we would consider paying for the license if he accepted BTC, and to please let us know the price of said license as we operate exclusively in bitcoin and do not have sterling for him.

Last time he/his agency took a month to reply. I'll keep you guys posted.

Adam

With them taking a month to reply, doesn't really look like its a serious issue to them . It might just be a warning to atleast have half of the sites stop accepting UK customers which indeed have.

I would wait to see what their reply is first. They act as an authority in many minds and whilst they may not be able to carry out any threats in the bitcoin world, they most probably can in the fiat world. I am keen to see what their response to Adam is. Thanks for asking the question Adam.

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July 13, 2015, 10:23:53 PM
 #109

bitcoin is classed as an asset in the UK..
so your gambling for assets ..You will need a license plus all details of your clients
loads of reasons why
money laundering
tax on profits
being nosey sods
tracking your every move..
but you wonder why no one wants to set up small businesses in the UK

if your worth billions none of the above apply NO TAX
sherbyspark
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July 16, 2015, 07:52:18 AM
 #110

Wanted to chime in here, Chris Sullivan also sent us the letter on June 15th, 2015. We've replied back asking him to clarify as we do not use any 'financial institutions' to process any UK-based transactions, to which he sent another pdf email with the 'money's worth' response today.

We've emailed him back with our statement that we do not officially service any UK-based residents as our deposits are anonymous and we do not monitor IPs. We have also told him we would consider paying for the license if he accepted BTC, and to please let us know the price of said license as we operate exclusively in bitcoin and do not have sterling for him.

Last time he/his agency took a month to reply. I'll keep you guys posted.

Adam

With them taking a month to reply, doesn't really look like its a serious issue to them . It might just be a warning to atleast have half of the sites stop accepting UK customers which indeed have.

I would wait to see what their reply is first. They act as an authority in many minds and whilst they may not be able to carry out any threats in the bitcoin world, they most probably can in the fiat world. I am keen to see what their response to Adam is. Thanks for asking the question Adam.

Yes, they should definitely wait for the reply. I didn't mean they shouldn't and ignore future threats from those people. Just that most of the other site have given up on this and have accepted to their demands of not accepting UK customers unless they obtain a license , I feel they should have responded with questions instead of just giving up on UK customers.
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July 16, 2015, 08:31:25 AM
 #111

Wanted to chime in here, Chris Sullivan also sent us the letter on June 15th, 2015. We've replied back asking him to clarify as we do not use any 'financial institutions' to process any UK-based transactions, to which he sent another pdf email with the 'money's worth' response today.

We've emailed him back with our statement that we do not officially service any UK-based residents as our deposits are anonymous and we do not monitor IPs. We have also told him we would consider paying for the license if he accepted BTC, and to please let us know the price of said license as we operate exclusively in bitcoin and do not have sterling for him.

Last time he/his agency took a month to reply. I'll keep you guys posted.

Adam

With them taking a month to reply, doesn't really look like its a serious issue to them . It might just be a warning to atleast have half of the sites stop accepting UK customers which indeed have.

I would wait to see what their reply is first. They act as an authority in many minds and whilst they may not be able to carry out any threats in the bitcoin world, they most probably can in the fiat world. I am keen to see what their response to Adam is. Thanks for asking the question Adam.

Yes, they should definitely wait for the reply. I didn't mean they shouldn't and ignore future threats from those people. Just that most of the other site have given up on this and have accepted to their demands of not accepting UK customers unless they obtain a license , I feel they should have responded with questions instead of just giving up on UK customers.

I don't look at it as giving up on UK customers, more like giving in to threats. But yes. Asking questions is good. However, fear of fines in the meantime is understandable.

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July 18, 2015, 05:42:42 AM
 #112

Got a reply today:

Quote
In your email you indicate that you believe that we have written to you in error because; you do not

have any hosting in the UK; you do not market or advertise to UK residents; none of your team

resides in the UK; and you do not accept any financial or Bitcoin transactions from UK residents. In

relation to your final point, you state that: ‘bitcoin transactions are anonymous and we have no idea

where they come from. As such, we cannot simply turn the switch off from accepting UK-residents'

deposits as we do not know they are UK residents.’

I have below addressed the points you have raised in the hope that this will resolve matters.

You should note that section 33 of the Gambling Act 2005, which makes it a criminal offence to

provide facilities for gambling without an operating licence authorising that activity, applies if remote

gambling equipment is located in Great Britain, or if the facilities are capable of being used in Great

Britain. Consequently, the fact that you do not have any hosting in the UK, do not market or advertise

to UK residents, and that your team do not reside in the UK, does not mean that a licence is not

required.

In response to the final point, it is our view that even if bitcoin transactions are completely anonymous

it is still possible for you to, and you should, implement means to identify if a player using bitcoin is

playing from a UK registered IP address and restrict such access based on the user’s IP address.

We note that you state that you do not accept any financial or bitcoin transactions from UK residents

which indicates to us that you are already able to identify the location of customers from their IP

addresses.

If gambling sites are successfully blocked to those in Great Britain trying to access them, it will

amount to ceasing activity. However, we are aware that IP blocking technology is by no means fool

proof and may be circumvented. As a result IP address blocking alone may not be sufficient to

ensure that consumers in Great Britain are blocked from gambling on the website. To reassure

yourself that you are not at risk of committing an offence, even if you implement IP blocking, you may

wish to consider what other mechanisms you could use in order to prevent the use of your facilities to

gamble by consumers in Great Britain, for example by asking for the country of location at customer

registration.

Details of how you can apply for an operting licence can be found on our website. In answer to your

question, we not accept payment in bitcoin.

If you take immediate steps to remedy the situation, this may avoid the need for the Commission to

take the matter further.

Victoria Square House

Victoria Square

Birmingham B2 4BP

T 0121 230 6666

F 0121 230 6720

www.gamblingcommission.gov.uk

Should you have any queries in relation to the content of this letter please contact me via email at

c.sullivan@gamblingcommission.gov.uk or by telephone on 0121 230 6686.

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July 18, 2015, 06:44:32 AM
 #113

Pretty much the standard reply . I suppose would have to be followed by IP blocking  . Asking country on registration will always have work arounds and would be useless .



Quote


If you take immediate steps to remedy the situation, this may avoid the need for the Commission to

take the matter further.


Perhaps you could drop another message asking about this .
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July 18, 2015, 10:16:29 AM
 #114

If you take immediate steps to remedy the situation, this may avoid the need for the Commission to
take the matter further


I got that exact wording in my 'cease and desist' order from them.
They made it very clear in their letter to me that they were going to prosecute me if I didn't close www.bitcoinpunter.com down immediately.
All I was doing was placing affiliate banners on it!
We live under a very oppressive government here in the UK.

By the way....anyone want to buy my domain?
I don't want a lot for it.
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July 30, 2015, 05:05:09 PM
 #115

We received another reply. In short, IP blocking is the only solution this "commission" would find 'satisfactory'. I also noticed it's been two different people back and forth, they are colleagues as described in their letters:
Chris Pryor
Senior Officer - Disclosure

Chris Sullivan
Manager - Remote Investigations

Anyway, this is unfortunate for UK users as we don't have any alternatives; we've asked him before if we can buy his license and he said no because they don't accept Bitcoin. As our operations are 100% bitcoin, it gives us no other choice but to follow the other operators and block UK-based users. We could also 'just do nothing and see what happens' (probably nothing), but from an operations point of view, this is easier and wouldn't keep our dev team up at night worrying to have to move hosting. In terms of the 'threat' if we don't comply, this is what he had to say:

Quote
Please set out, in detail, as to why you cannot take implement IP blocking as a means of preventing
users in Great Britain from accessing you site, if this is in fact the case. We again request that you
should take immediate steps to remedy the situation.
We remain of the view that by allowing consumers located in Great Britain to access
[our website] you are potentially committing a criminal offence. If you do not satisfy us that
you have taken reasonable steps to prevent such access, we will pursue other avenues to prevent
the unlicensed activities. This may result in the website no longer being accessible.

We're contemplating adding a custom page for UK users to point them the way of VPNs, I wonder if that would fly.

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July 30, 2015, 06:31:34 PM
 #116

We received another reply. In short, IP blocking is the only solution this "commission" would find 'satisfactory'. I also noticed it's been two different people back and forth, they are colleagues as described in their letters:
Chris Pryor
Senior Officer - Disclosure

Chris Sullivan
Manager - Remote Investigations

Anyway, this is unfortunate for UK users as we don't have any alternatives; we've asked him before if we can buy his license and he said no because they don't accept Bitcoin. As our operations are 100% bitcoin, it gives us no other choice but to follow the other operators and block UK-based users. We could also 'just do nothing and see what happens' (probably nothing), but from an operations point of view, this is easier and wouldn't keep our dev team up at night worrying to have to move hosting. In terms of the 'threat' if we don't comply, this is what he had to say:

Quote
Please set out, in detail, as to why you cannot take implement IP blocking as a means of preventing
users in Great Britain from accessing you site, if this is in fact the case. We again request that you
should take immediate steps to remedy the situation.
We remain of the view that by allowing consumers located in Great Britain to access
[our website] you are potentially committing a criminal offence. If you do not satisfy us that
you have taken reasonable steps to prevent such access, we will pursue other avenues to prevent
the unlicensed activities. This may result in the website no longer being accessible.

We're contemplating adding a custom page for UK users to point them the way of VPNs, I wonder if that would fly.

Well what a great big bully it seems that the commission is being.

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July 30, 2015, 07:44:42 PM
 #117

-sinp-

Quote
-snip-
 If you do not satisfy us that
you have taken reasonable steps to prevent such access, we will pursue other avenues to prevent
the unlicensed activities. This may result in the website no longer being accessible.

All it needs is a single threat and all site will comply. This is pretty much happened to the other site as well which is logical because it is better to lose a fraction of customer from UK rather than losing the whole business. As for the bolded part, it seems pretty much indicates that the Gambling commision will write a letter to your hosting company to stop hosting your site or could be just DDOSing the site ( which is highly unlikely but still possible )

We're contemplating adding a custom page for UK users to point them the way of VPNs, I wonder if that would fly.

Pretty much unneeded as because VPN is pretty common nowadays to avoid such IP checks (?)

we've asked him before if we can buy his license and he said no because they don't accept Bitcoin

Kinda confusing but If there is an intention to purchase the license, then you could just cash the BTC into FIAT and buy the license anyway why insist on using BTC?

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August 04, 2015, 07:30:17 AM
 #118

Can somebody explain to me why PrimeDice are still allowing UK players to bet? I'm assuming they found a loophole of some sort.

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August 04, 2015, 10:07:08 AM
 #119

Can somebody explain to me why PrimeDice are still allowing UK players to bet? I'm assuming they found a loophole of some sort.

I doubt it, they probably just haven't had any contact from them yet. It seems once they got a letter or email from one specific country they blocked access to that particular nation. Depending on where PD is hosted there's probably not much anyone could do anyway.
vennali
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August 04, 2015, 10:44:45 AM
 #120

Can somebody explain to me why PrimeDice are still allowing UK players to bet? I'm assuming they found a loophole of some sort.

I doubt it, they probably just haven't had any contact from them yet. It seems once they got a letter or email from one specific country they blocked access to that particular nation. Depending on where PD is hosted there's probably not much anyone could do anyway.
From what I recall didn't Primedice close down to UK customers already ?
Did they reopen to UK customers ?

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