Online gambling growth and mergers on the Isle of Man

The online gambling industry continues to thrive throughout the ups and downs experienced in other industries. The Isle of Man remains a world-class base for this type of business, offering not only a favourable tax regime but excellent infrastructure, to include communications networks, hosting facilities, legal, accounting and banking facilities and disaster recovery options.

Gambling regulation on the Isle of Man

While online gambling businesses go from strength to strength, regulation is tending to gradually tighten to ensure gamblers are protected.

The Island is included on the UK’s Gambling Act 2005 whitelist, meaning that businesses can advertise in the UK. To be included on the whitelist, a jurisdiction needs to show that it has robust regulation, is open, secure, fair and that gambling there is not a source of crime.

The Isle of Man has attained whitelist status by aligning itself closely with the legislation and licensing rules of the UK. This means that any new regulations proposed by the UK Gambling Commission are likely to be followed.

Start-ups, mergers and acquisitions in the online gambling industry

Growth is still anticipated in the online gambling industry and more start-ups, as well as mergers and acquisitions are highly likely. To take advantage of the Isle of Man’s advantageous tax regime, businesses need to adhere carefully to Manx regulations.

A licence is needed under the terms of the Online Gambling Regulation Act 2001. The application can be prepared on your behalf by a legal advisor.

The business will need to be carried out by a company which is registered as an Isle of Man corporation.

Servers where the bets are struck must be hosted on the Isle of Man and players must be registered on these servers.

Banking should be carried out on the Isle of Man unless a waiver has been agreed.

The business must have a minimum of two company directors. One of these can be the designated official.

If you have any questions concerning the operation, acquisition or merger of gambling businesses on the Isle of Man, Quinn Legal will be happy to advise you and assist you in applying for a licence and complying with regulations.

Our team are experienced in dealing with business start-ups, as well as mergers and acquisitions and will be able to discuss your options with you, to include advice on funding, cross-border transactions and joint ventures.

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