Home Blog

Paddy Power announces £10b merger with PokerStars

Betfair and Paddy Power’s parent company Flutter Entertainment announced last week its intention to acquire Stars Group in a deal worth £10 billion.

The merger still needs approval from both UK and Canadian authorities, but provided it goes through the deal would create the worlds largest gambling operator in terms of revenue.

Those that unfamiliar with Stars Group (formerly Amaya Gaming) will certainly have heard of their brands which include sportsbook heavy-weight Skybet UK, Oddschecker, Pokerstars and Full Tilt.

The two companies announced that Flutter Entertainment would acquire Stars Group in an all-share purchase – a £200m premium to Stars’ current valuation. Flutter shareholders would own 55 percent of the new company with Stars’ owners holding the remainder.

During the announcement Flutter’s chief executive Peter Jackson discussed that talks of a merger had been an on-going for the past couple of years.

“This will give us a much bigger platform to operate from. When you’re very small in a market you don’t have anything that differentiates you and you become a bit of a commodity.”

Under the terms Stars’ CEO Rafi Ashkenazi will become chief operating officer.

Revenues in the new-formed company are likely to double those of rival Ladbrokes Coral owners GVC and 50 percent more than Bet365 according to market analysts.

Whilst the two companies have agreed the merger in principle, the deal could take until the third quarter of 2020 as it faces scrutiny from officials in the UK and Australia due to size of the market share the new firm would have.

What’s in it for Flutter?

Cap on FOBT stakes to £2 has been a blow to highstreet bookmakers.Flutter Entertainment’s earnings have struggled in recent years with Paddy Power and Betfair already in saturated markets in the UK, US and Australia.

The UK governments decision to reduce the stake punters can place on fixed odds betting terminals (FOBT) from £100 to £2 has been a massive blow for the industry.

In comparison Stars Group is six times bigger outside of Flutter Entertainment’s markets and it’s this reason why the gambling giant are keen to get a deal done.

This will expand their footprint further in Latin America and Asia by acquiring a well established brand in those markets and provide some much needed revenue growth for shareholders.

Stars’ Align

A major contributing factor in the deal came in May when Stars’ made an incredible coup by partnering with Fox Sports for the rights to provide sports betting odds to US viewers. Stars group now has ownership of FoxBet which is a subsidiary of Fox Sports.

In 2018 Paddy Power bought the rights to US fantasy football site FanDuel for shares-ownership in Flutter.

The merger would now consolidate the US market to only four major sports betting players, the others being William Hill, GVC which owns Ladbrokes Coral and Bet365.

Will Punters Benefit from Flutter Entertainment Stars Group Merger?

In short, No.

This is a heavily regulated industry which results in high barriers to entry (meaning a lot of capital and resources just to keep-up with existing companies).

So any concentration in an already niche market can only be bad news for customers.

It’s likely to lead to less favorable odds for punters.

There’s a good chance that this latest merger in sports betting will lead to further consolidation, with other rival bookmakers looking for partners to strengthen their position.

Possible Platform Shake-up?

The only possible glimmer of good news that may come from this deal is that Stars Group may now receive a much needed cash injection to innovate their poker platform.

Rival poker sites such as 888 Poker have completely overhauled their poker platform back in March in an attempt to catch-up with leaders Pokerstars.

Negative earning for Stars’ has lead to its platform falling behind. Flutter should have much needed funds to deploy to Stars Group platforms.

So it’s likely we’ll see a shakeup in all of Stars’ brands to keep ahead of its rivals.

Ladbrokes Odds Boost | All You Need to Know 2019

ladbrokes odds boost

In this weeks article we’ll explain how to get your hands on Ladbrokes Odds Boost and how frequently you can use and exploit it.

We’ll also highlight some of the key terms to make sure you qualify for this deal.

Finally we’ll explain when best to use Odds Boost to maximise your returns.

What is Ladbrokes Odds Boost?

ladbrokes odds boostLadbrokes Odds Boost is a simple yet powerful way to boost the odds on specific matches or events.

Punters eligible for odds boost will find tokens available on their bet slip, when they selects odds for a particular game that qualifies for odds boost.

We’ll discuss later how to find out which markets and matches are eligible for odds boost.

How to Qualify for Odds Boost?

First thing you’ll need a Ladbrokes account.

If you don’t have one already we have an exclusive offer of Bet £5 Get £20 in Free Bets. Use the promo code 20FREE.

To get this deal bet a minimum £5 bet within 14 days of setting up the account and use minimum odds of ½ to qualify for 4x £5 free bets.

Follow these Key Terms to Qualify

1. Ladbrokes Odds Boost is NOT available for Paysafe, Skrill, Neteller, PayPal or Moneybookers, so avoid these deposit options.

2. This promotion is available to new and existing punters who are registered in the UK and Republic of Ireland and are eligible to receive Ladbrokes promotions.

3. Any employees, advertising agencies or web promoters associated with this promotion are not eligible for this promotion.

4. Ladbrokes reserves the rights to withdraw this promotion at any time.

How to Claim Ladbrokes Odds Boost

A minimum of one Odds Boost token will be added to your account each day.

Odds Boost tokens will only be available when you have odds on your betslip for qualifying matches/events for specific markets.

For a list of qualifying markets/events go to My Account > Odds Boost for more details.

Only the first £50 of any betslip will have odds boost applied.

Tokens cannot be applied to already enhanced odds such as Ladbrokes Price Boost promotions, but they can be used in conjunction with other promotions. More details of this can be found on the ladbrokes website.

Key Terms and Restrictions

Tokens must be used before the start of specific sporting events otherwise they will expire.

Odds Boost tokens cannot be used with any other products including: Ladbrokes Exchange, Poker, Slots, Casino, Lotto, Pools, Games and Bingo.

Tokens cannot be used in conjunction with new customer free bets – cash only placed bets.

Odds Boost tokens cannot be applied to complex multiples such as Lucky 15 – single and single-line multiples only.

Our Verdict

Clearly any promotion that allows customers to enhance their odds gets our vote.

But make sure you are not attracted into other markets you normally wouldn’t, just to receive odds boost tokens. I’ve seen this time and time again with professional punters that should be follow a specific strategy, but instead are persuaded by bookmaker promotions and loose out.

I do like the feature where tokens will automatically appear on your betslip when you add any stakes eligible for odds boost. Just be sure to apply them before you place anything.

If you happen to receive Ladbrokes Odds Boost while placing a single or accumulator bet then great, but otherwise steer clear.

Could BetVictor Smart Cards for Horse Racing Give you the Edge?

betvictor smart card horse racing

There is no shortage of innovative products being released by BetVictor.

Last week the UK bookmaker launched BetVictor Smart Cards with an aim to take a stronger position in the online horse racing market.

So what makes BetVictor Horse Racing Smart Cards so different?

For the first time ever, you will have access to the latest up to date information from the paddock with smart cards – direct to your mobile.

In the past horse racing race cards were released just 24 hours in advance and remained static until the time of the race.

With BetVictor Smart Cards you get on-track insight from jockey and trainers, along with on-the-day insider tips and dynamic analytical data.

Smart Cards will also highlight any trends in betting activity, so you can make an informed decision and improve your chances.

Following the news, Product Designer – Adam Barnes was keen to discuss the key benefits:

“Traditional racecards remain static and do not update as the day’s racing unfolds. This can result in racecards displaying stale, inaccurate or misleading information. This was the opportunity which we focused on.”

“With Smart Cards we will display a selection of smart stats which are delivered dynamically to our racecards. Each morning, we will analyse the day’s races and deliver the most eye-catching statistics which will give users a better understanding on a horse’s chance in a race.”

BetVictor Smart Card Key Features

Some of features include an alert if a jokey and trainer with a higher than average strike rate team-up.

In this instance the smart card would alert you for that particular race and the number of races they are involved in.

Other live up to date information can be if there is a last minute jockey changes or changes to weather conditions which may or may not favour certain horses.

If in the meeting a jockey or trainer has won two or more races the smart cards will flag this to the user.

Latest BetVictor Offer

If this has peeked your interest we have an exclusive BetVictor offer: Bet £5 Get £40 in Free Bets.

Bet just £5 and get £20 in Sports Free Bets & a £20 Casino Bonus. Free bets must have odds of 2.0 or greater and will expire within 7 days, so make sure you use them.

There is no wagering on sports free bets, but casino bonuses come with a 40 times wager requirement.

Betvictor Horse Racing Smart Cards Q&A:

Where can the horse race smart cards be found?

Simply head over to the Horse Racing tab and click on any of the UK or Irish horse racing events and the Smart Cards should be in front of you.

Where is the information sourced?

Betvictor have a long standing relationship with Timeform which provides horse racing analytical data content.

Do any other bookmakers offer this feature?

No currently Betvictor is the only bookmaker to provide dynamic and up-to-date racecards throughout race-day. It’s likely that other bookmakers will follow-suit giving BetVictor customers and edge.

Our Verdict

While Betvictor Smart Card may not be the holy grail for horse racing fans, it’s clear that they are trying to give their customers an edge over their rivals with the latest, accurate information from the track.

This is such an impressive product that it’s only a matter of time before every other bookmaker cotton’s onto the idea and creates their own. So why not take advantage of this and exploit the narrowing odds while you can.

Matched Betting VPN when Betting Aboard – Stay Under the Radar

If you’ve been matched betting for a while now you know just how lucrative it can be. Even ten pound a day which is relatively straight-forward to make can return a decent monthly earning.

So the last thing you need is any down-time while your away on holiday.

The problem is that most bookmakers will not allow punters to gamble abroad, even if your a UK resident! We’ll come back to the reasons why later on…

In this article we’re going to explain how using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) can help get around betting aboard.

It’s not as technical as it sounds believe me!

We’ll also explain why not all VPN’s are created equal, and how bookmakers can tell if you’re using them and ways of getting round this.

Finally we’ll give you our 5 “Super-Stealth” Matched Betting VPN’s by our very own IP security expert, so you can stay under the radar for longer.

Content:
Money, Money, Money
Why You Can’t Gamble Abroad
How bookmakers detect your Matched Betting Abroad
Matched Betting VPN
Nerd Alert
Benefits of using Matched Betting VPN when Outside UK
Not all VPN’s are created equally
Best VPN’s for Matched Betting
Setup Your Own Home VPN for Free using a Raspberry Pi
Our Verdict

Money, Money, Money

It happens to all great matched bettors eventually…

You finally pull yourself away from the latest Call of Duty and start your matched betting journey.

Within a three months you’re totally hooked earning enough to treat you and the family to a well earning holiday in the costa del brava.

Problem is bookmakers won’t take any of your bets while your abroad, so any time away will be lost earnings for the year.

Fortunately you read a post on a forum where a guy used a VPN while outside of the UK, which allowed him to continue matched betting and his winnings ended up covering half the cost of the holiday.

Why You Can’t Gamble Abroad

So why do bookmakers block punters when gambling outside of the UK?

It’s all down to licencing and regulation.

Each country has its own gambling licence which bookmakers have to apply for before they can operate in that country. Even though a specific bookmaker may have a UK gambling licence there is no guarantee they will have licences in other countries.

There may also be different regulations and rules between countries that restrict certain types of bets.

You also need to careful as some bookmakers may not warn you of licencing restrictions in certain jurisdictions.

In one case, while the bookmaker did not restrict the punter from placing a bet outside of the UK, they refused to pay any winnings as it breached their licencing rules.

So as you can see while some sites may not automatically block you, some may just take your hard earned cash and refuse to pay even if you win.

There are some bookmakers such as Skybet that will list all of the accepted counties where you can use your account abroad, so it’s worth checking out first.

How bookmakers detect your Matched Betting Abroad

Every time you connect to a network, whether it’s your home router or mobile phone provider, your device is assigned an IP address. Think of it as a local area postcode which allows mail (or in this case bytes of data) to be sent back and forth to your device.

It’s this IP address that bookmakers use to find your approximate location (within a mile or two).

But there are ways to change this address, making bookmaker think your in one location when in fact your entirely somewhere else. And that’s with a VPN.

Matched Betting VPN

So what is a VPN?

A Virtual Private Network (or VPN) is a remote private network that extends over a public network, it allows users access as if it were part of the same localised network.

matched betting abroad
VPN’s can be used to hide your precise location from bookmakers.

Lets use your home and work networks as an example.

Both your home and work are private networks, separated by a wider public network (the web).

What a VPN does is that it allows both private networks to be connected together securely, as if they were part of one whole private network. Meaning users can search for and find other computers on that virtual network, but in reality they could be in different cities or even countries.

How do VPN’s hide my location?

The beauty of these virtual networks is that you can use them as a “proxy server” to connect to other public servers such as bookmakers indirectly.

When the bookmaker connects to you they will not see your devices actual destination address, they will only see the address of the virtual network you are connected to.

So if you happen to be outside of Blighty on your holidays, and you connect your mobile or laptop to a VPN within the UK, the bookmaker will only see the location of the VPN.

And not the reality of you placing matched bets by the side of the pool in Cyprus.

Nerd Alert

OK so this sound really technical trying to set-up a VPN connection, I wouldn’t know where to begin??

The great news is you don’t have to have a Phd in computer science to set one up.

And most of the time it should take less than 5 minutes to get you up and running!

There are a number of online companies now that provide VPN services for a ridiculously modest fee (compared to your matched betting earnings over the same period).

So instead of setting up and maintaining a local VPN in your home, these companies have servers based internationally and only requires software or mobile app to connect to.

Benefits of using Matched Betting VPN when Outside UK

Pro’s and Con’s

Most come with a downloadable app
Simple to setup, saves you hours trying to configure your own
Connect multiple devices to the same account
Technical support available
Flat monthly fee
Cost. Generally pay between £3-5 a month for the service

Not all VPN’s are created equally

While VPN’s are great proxies to hide your precise location, they do have their flaws.

VPN vendors have huge banks of servers to handle all of the traffic from their users, so they have a specific number of locations (which are generally found in major cities) in any one country.

The issue with this is that some of these IP addresses are well known to be dedicated VPN servers, which defeats the whole point of using them in the first place for our exercise.

You see VPN’s are generally used as a secure connection between networks, they were not intended to be used as a proxy to provide geographical anonymity for users.

VPN’s do have other practical uses such as proxying to video streaming services such as BBC iPlayer or Netflix. Ever heard that the US generally has much more content and newer films on Netflix than in the UK? With a VPN you can proxy to a US server and watch the films you can’t yet see in the UK.

But as we mentioned before Netflix is aware of this sort of practice and has it’s own blacklist of known VPN servers in the US. So even if you are using a VPN, you might not necessarily get to watch US content.

There are however a small group of VPN service providers with “distributed networks” which are not known to video streaming services or bookmakers (coming back to the original subject).

4 Best Matched Betting VPN’s while abroad

Below is a list of the best “stealth” match betting VPN’s which will keep you under the radar of bookies.

Nord VPN
Best Security for Match Betting
‎Express VPN
Great Performance
Vyper VPN
Easy to use Mobile App
Cyber Ghost VPN
Tons of advanced features

Setup Your Own Home VPN using a Raspberry Pi

Of course it is possible to roll-your-own private VPN in your own home.

The huge advantage of doing this is that the bookmaker will see that you are the same IP address as you normally do, which reduces the chances of you being caught.

The only issue with this is that it takes times to set one up, time which you could spend earning more money with matched betting.

But i’m a sucker for a good challenge and in a future article i’ll show you how to setup a Stealth Fighter Matched Betting VPN using a Raspberry Pi.

Our Verdict

It can be difficult to enjoy a well earned break when you’re missing out on some matched betting earnings.

VPN’s provide a simple solution for any matched bettor looking to circumvent restrictions that come with gambling outside of the UK.

Some commercial VPN’s are well known by bookmakers and likely to give the game away, so it pays to use a high-end VPN that allows for distributed network addresses and we’ve given you a few examples of the best Matched Betting VPN’s on the market.

But punters need to be aware of the implications of doing this, as this will technically be in violation of any bookmaker terms and could result in your account being gubbed sooner rather than later.

Maybe it’s just better laying on the sun lounger and enjoying some time away with the family.

If you’ve had any experience of using VPN’s for betting outside of the UK, leave them in the comments section below.

Betfred Double Delight Hat Trick Heaven DDHH – DOUBLE/TRIPLE Your Odds 2019

betfred double delight hat-trick heaven in play

It seem like bookmakers have taken note of the huge success both Paddy and Bet365 have had with their 2UP promotions.

So they’ve come up with their own tantalising offer for you lucky punters.

But Betfred has taken a different approach with a unique offer that knows the socks off 2UP.

In this article we’ll explain what Betfred Double Delight Hat Trick Heaven is and how you can take advantage of this deal.

We’ll also guide you on how to place your first DDHH bet.

Finally we’ll highlight some of the key terms as part of the promotion, so there shouldn’t be anything to catch you out.

Betfred Double Delight Hat Trick Heaven DDHH

So what is Double Delight Hat-Trick Heaven?

Double Delight Hat Trick Heaven is a new promotion from Betfred that can double or triple the odds on your first goal-scorer single bet. If the first goal-scorer scores again Betfred will double your odds and if the same player scores a hat-trick they will triple your odds.

betfred double delight hat trick heaven

Picture the scene…

Harry Kane is the first goal-scorer of the game and your FGS bet at odds of 4/1 comes off – Happy days.

Later in the game Kane bags another one, now your odds have doubled to 8/1!

But wait there’s more to come…

He nets in a third and now the England forward has score a hat-trick so now your odds have tripled to 12/1 or 13 decimal and your dancing round the house!

Betfred DDHH – Getting Started

This sounds great, so how do I get started?

Well the first thing you will need (if you don’t have one already) is to open a Betfred account.

Right now Betfred has a cracking offer to triple your first deposit with Bet £10 Get £30 in free bets.

This offers is for 18+ new customers only. Be sure to read the terms above before joining – for a full list checkout Betfred’s T&C’s

Registration should take less than 5 mins, after that you’re up and running!

How to place Double Delight Hat Trick Heaven bet

The process is really straight-forward.

First thing you’ll need to do is place a first goal scorer pre-match single bet on any of the specific Double Delight Hat-Trick Heaven games.

A full list of games can be found on the DDHH Promotions page. 

Following that the odds will automatically update if your chosen scorer qualifies by scoring more than one goal.

Key Terms and Conditions:

  • This offer is only available online (Betfred.com and Betfred mobile).
    Selected first goal-scorer markets only.
  • Bets must be placed prior to kick-off (exclude in-play promotion).
  • Odds will be doubled if the customer’s chosen first goal-scorer scores first and scores again.
  • Odds will be tripled if the customer’s chosen first goal-scorer scores first and two more times.
  • Offer is fulfilled in cash.
  • Single-based bets only.
  • Own goals do not qualify
  • Goals are only counted in first 90 minutes – extra-time not included.
  • Offer cannot be used in conjunction with free bets.
  • Betfred reserve the right to exclude players from this offer.

What matches are available for Double Delight Hat-Trick Heaven?

If you check out Betfred’s DDHH promotions page, you’ll find a list of all of the games available.

In general most of the major UK football games will be included, such as English Premier League and Championship League, Scottish Premiership, European competitions and International games.

Double Delight Hat Trick Heaven includes In Play Markets!

But wait, Betfred has raised the bar even further!

Due to the huge success of this promotion, Double Delight Hat Trick Heaven is also available on in-play markets.

With DDHH In-Play you get all the same promotional benefits while the game is active.

Some of the terms have changed slightly so make sure you check all of the terms for Double Delight Hat-Trick Heaven In-Play before you place a bet.

Super League DDHH

ddhh super leagueAnd it’s not just football fans that can take advantage of this incredible deal.

Betfred has recently opened it up to rugby fans with Super League Double Delight Hat-Trick Heaven.

Just as the football promotion, Super League punters can also get double and triple the odds on the first try-scorer.

Some of the terms and conditions have changed slightly so be sure to check these before betting.

Our Verdict

Betfred have clearly tried to differentiate themselves from the rest of the herd.

Although it may not draw as much attention as 2UP, Double Delight Hat Trick Heaven can be more lucrative offer for punters to exploit.

But I would strongly suggest you only use this promotion if first goal-scorer bets are already part of your long-term winning strategy. FGS bets are not for the faint hearted due as you are your more likely to lose your shirt than come out on top.

Overall Betfred DDHH offers punters something unique with real value and if you were planning on placing a FGS bet, then this is the cherry on the cake if it comes off.

Bookmaker Deposits using Libra Coin – What’s not to Like?

bookmaker deposits using libra coin

Since it’s announcement a few weeks back, Zuckerberg’s new digital coin Libra has come under intense scrutiny from politicians and regulators alike, concerned of a new virtual currency that’s outside of the US fiat monetary system.

But Libra coin opens up a lot of possibilities to simplify mobile payments for millions of users and provide a stable currency, something that we take for granted in the west.

In this months Betting on Tech we discuss just what Libra can offer punters.

What obstacles lie ahead for bookmakers adopting this payments service.

And whether or not we’ll see bookmaker deposits using Libra coin in the future.

Libra for the masses

So why should bookmakers start accepting Libra coin?

While our US friends are just dripped their toe into in field, sports betting in the UK has slowed down to single-digit growth.

As a result bookmakers are constantly throwing new and better promotions to lure punters from rival bookies.

Boo-hoo I hear to say!

While I don’t have much sympathy for them, i’m fully aware that bookmakers are facing an upward struggle. In the past that has meant creating innovative products such a money back specials and same-game-multi’s to stay ahead of the competition.

But most punters are looking for three things:

1. A well established trust-worthy (I use the term loosely) bookmaker site.
2. Decent odds and commission charges relative to other bookies.
3. A platform that makes the whole process a breeze.

The later is important, because one major part of that betting process is payment i.e. transferring funds from your bank account to the bookmaker.

I would argue that any bookmaker that takes the lead in accepting Libra coin will see a record number in new and existing customers joining their platform resulting in record profits.

Why would bookmakers choose Libra coin over crypto?

So i’m sure the next question any crypto fanboy will ask is:

Why choose Libra over existing crypto’s such as Bitcoin and Ethereum?

There’s a good reason why bookmakers have shied away from accepting crypto currencies in the past and will continue to do so…

Anonymity.

Bitcoin, Ethereum and all other crypto’s were designed so the wallet holder remains anonymous.

And there lies the problem…

Bookmakers are heavily regulated by the Gambling Commission and are under strict guidelines to avoid any accounts that could be used for money laundering purposes.

With so many issues that come with crypto (some that may be over exaggerated) they’ve decided it’s just not worth it.

Why Libra is different…

bookmakers libra coin app
First preview of how Facebook’s digital wallet will look.

OK so why would Libra coin be any different?

Well for a start it would be connected to a genuine Facebook user account.

Now I appreciate that at present, anyone can create a fake Facebook user account in minutes, so hear me out.

If Facebook wants to get this new digital payment system through congress, they’re going to need to have a compelling argument and the key to this will be to guarantee user authenticity.

Facebook will achieve this by using sophisticated artificial intelligent software that will  reference your friends to your phone contacts and interactions within the account.

In this year alone Facebook has deleted 2 million fake account using this process.

The second is that your Libra wallet would need to be connected to a regular bank account which would further verify the account holder.

Facebook will also likely ask for some form of photo ID before signing up to Libra for enhanced security.

Is this all too orwellian for you? Yes but that’s another conversation…

With all of these security checks and financial regulations in place, bookmakers would be crazy to miss out on the potential opportunity that lies ahead with hundreds of millions of users with access to this digital payment system.

It’s a win-win for bookmakers.

A Spanner in the Works

The only thing that could stop bookmakers from integrating Libra onto their platform is of course if Facebook doesn’t allow it.

But given that Facebook would be paid by bookmakers a small percentage fee for each transaction you make, they would be fools not to.

Would Facebook allow bookmaker deposits using Libra coin?

Even though big tech companies portray themselves as being liberal and ethical entities. They are still multi-national corporations that need to be consistently improving profits over time to their shareholders.

Google for instance only recently relaxed their policy in allowing bookmaker apps onto their Play Store.

More recently a number of institutional banks and new online only banks such as Monzo have introduced gambling restrictions to allow user to block payments to bookmakers as a way to help curb gambling additions.

So there could still be push-back even if Libra was being actively used.

Our Verdict

OK so Libra coin hasn’t even been released yet on Facebook and there are still many obstacles ahead for Zuckerberg and his team of developers to iron-out before we start using it.

But this new fintech payment system is just the beginning of a new wave of financial services we’re likely to see, whether government officials like it or not.

If bookmakers want to survive and fend-off the competition they have to be constantly improving their services for their customers and simpler mobile payments is just one of them.

While it’s unlikely we’ll see punters depositing to bookmakers using Libra coin any time soon. I can certainly see this and other stable-coin offerings from big-tech companies such as Google and Apple being introduced within the next five years. Watch this space!

Could Monzo be the Solution to Deposit Funds to Bookmakers?

could monzo be the future of bookmaker deposits

Monzo is the UK’s first online only bank, that aims to shake-up the banking system.

The digital payments app is growing at a rapid rate, with two million users and more than 200k new customers signing up each month.

In this article i’ll explain just what is it that gives this online bank an edge over it’s competitors.

We’ll discuss the pros and cons that bookmakers may face by fully integrating Monzo.

Plus why I believe Monzo will dominate the digital payments space when it comes to depositing to bookmakers.

Contents:
Fintech Shake-up
Monzo – Built for Mobile
Mobile Betting Needs a Mobile Bank
Which Bookmakers accept Monzo deposits?
Why Monzo is perfect for Sports Betting
Our Verdict

FinTech Shake-Up

In recent years the financial sector has seen radical change, with a number of fintech start-ups looking to take on the oligarchical big banks at their own game.

And the rewards are enormous.

global non cash transactions 2018

According to the World Payments Report;

Total Global non-cash payment volumes reached 600 billion in 2018
E-wallet transactions surpassing 55 billion

Each of these transactions take micro-payments for the convenience of transferring the funds, the two biggest names being VISA and Mastercard which bring in tens of billions of dollars in revenue each year.

More recently, fintech companies such as PayPal, Square and Monzo have come onto the scene to take a slice of the financial payments pie, which will continue to grow 12% annually.

Monzo – Built for Mobile

Unlike more traditional financial institutes such as Barclays and HSBC, fintech companies such as Monzo are listening and adapting to consumer trends which are seeing demand in mobile/online payments.

In this year alone i’ve paid for more online services and goods using PayPal than in the previous five years, as it it provides greater convenience and enhanced security.

Which we’ll come to later on…

This trend is set to continue as more companies switch to digital services.

Mobile Betting Needs a Mobile Bank


So why Monzo?

What’s so special about this start-up tech company?

Well Monzo’s has first-mover-advantage in this space.

It’s the UK’s first digital payments service and online bank that is regulated by the FCA – a huge milestone for the company.

Not only can you pay for goods using Monzo’s mobile app, but you can also set-up an online current account and have access instant to your cash via a debit card.

OK so a debit card isn’t anything ground-breaking.

But unlike other e-wallet financial services like Neteller and PayPal, you can transfer any winnings directly to your Monzo account, allowing you instant access to your cash on mobile and through your cash card.

Monzo has also been built from the ground up, with mobile in mind.

So where big banks have created apps as an after thought using third-party companies, Monzo entire core business is it’s mobile app.

Which is why a recent report from Bloomfield states that Monzo has an NPS score (which tracks customer satisfaction) of 80, which is unusually high for a bank.

Which Bookmakers accept Monzo deposits?

The great news is they all do!

Monzo is accepted by all online bookmakers that accept debit cards as a method of payment. Simply enter your sort-code and account number during registration as you would do with any other bank.

Why Monzo is perfect for Sports Betting

Where I think Monzo will excel in the future is when bookmakers fully adopt the banking app onto their sportsbook platform.

In effect connecting both bookmaker and banking app seamlessly.

Why?

This would allow punters to quickly and safely top-up their balance using the Monzo app. The user would simply enter their Monzo password/ finger print and enter the amount they want to deposit.

No card details would be entered on the bookmakers site and within a couple of taps the money is transferred into your bookmaker account.

As discussed previously, any winnings can be instantly credited back to your Monzo bank account without having to login online and request a transfer, which is what you currently have to do with other ewallet platforms like PayPal and Neteller.

Finally, there are no fees with Monzo.

That’s right, unlike PayPal and Neteller that will charge you up to 3%, with Monzo there is no charge to transfer any winnings back to your account, all you will pay is your standard bookmaker commission rate.

Our Verdict

Fintech companies are changing the landscape of how we pay for goods and services online and on the highstreet.

Bookmakers will adapt to changes in trends and we’ve already seen this with the adoption of e-wallets such as PayPal.

In this next phase we’ll see fintech banks such as Monzo providing a simpler yet more secure way of transferring our money between accounts.

While I do not entirely endorse Monzo to be used as your main current account to handle all of your monthly transactions. I do think it’s useful as a holding account between your main bank and bookmaker.

This avoids you entering your main account card details online and thus significantly reduces the chances of you being hacked.

Alexa Betting Apps : Ask Alexa to place your next bet

Smart home devices have been around for a few years now.

While they were initially thought of as a bit of a gimick, Alexa can now do some pretty cool things; from delivering a Domino’s Pizza to ordering you next Uber!

So this got me thinking, could you place a bet using Alexa?

Is it even possible?

In this months Betting on Tech we’re going to discuss Alexa betting apps and how easy is it to place a bet with Amazon Alexa.

Nearly 50% of search terms will come from voice by 2020. 

We’ll also cover the latest sports betting apps you can download to your smart hub today.

Plus i’ll give you my two-cents as to why I think it’s inevitable we’ll be betting on Alexa much sooner than you think.

Contents:
Shift to Voice Search
Alexa has Skills
Betting Apps on Alexa
4 Catalysts to spark voice search betting
Will we place a bet using Alexa in the future?

The Short answer: No You Can’t

But as you’ll see later on, we’re on the cusp of a change in search preferences that will completely change we search for information in the future.

Shift to Voice Search

According to a recent article by Wordstream:

  • 50% of all searches will be involve voice by 2020.
  • 30% of searches by 2020 will not be done via a screen.
  • 15% of all US homes now have a home hub.

This was quite a surprise to me, as I would have expected the majority of search requests are still done using more traditional methods such as a keyboard interface and display.

There certainly appears to be a secular shift towards voice search but are industries ready for this titanic shift?

Alexa has Skills

So recently my wife very kindly gave me an Amazon Alexa as a birthday gift for reaching a milestone, that’s right I just turned 30.

In fact Amazon regularly has half-price offers on both Alexa and Echo Dot for those of you interested.

After searching the web to see what cool things my new smart home can do I came across the usual suspects, which i’m sure you’ve seen before. These include:

alexa betting apps
Morrisons app is a very convenient way to add groceries to your shopping trolley.

Anypod – Play your favourite podcasts
Big Sky – Provides up-to-date weather news
Philips Hue – Controls home lighting
Nest – Thermostat heating controller

Here’s a complete list of Alexa Skill apps currently available to download on Alexa.

Whilst this all sounds very Black Mirror having my entire home fully autonomous, I was more interested to see what betting skills Alexa had in it’s arsenal. And whether it’s possible to speak to Alexa to find odds for a particular game and place a bet.

No touch, just voice assisted from start to finish – That’s the challenge

Unsurprisingly my search was cut rather short as I couldn’t find any bookmaker with a voice assisted sportsbook app.

I guess we’re not quite there yet with the technology…

Betting Apps on Alexa

Whilst I couldn’t find a one-stop solution to betting with Alexa, here what I did find on Amazon’s Skills marketplace:

Paddy Power
Racing Results
Sky Sports
Basketball Odds
OLGB

Paddy Power had a daily flash news with some of the latest tips and odds of the day.

You say “Alexa, what’s my flash briefing?”

And it will give you the latest sports betting news from Paddy.

It’s hardly ground-breaking tech from the betting boffin’s at gave us money back specials!

Sky Sports app did pretty much the same thing providing you the latest news as text-to-speech.

Then there’s the Racing Results app which provides (you guessed it) racing results.

Even OLBG had a Horse Racing Tips app, but after listening to this you will still need another device to place the bet.

The only skill that came close to it was Basketball Odds which lists the latest 14 games along with the odds for each. But again this is just an automated script with no intelligence.

There was alot of garbage apps out there!

So i’ve comprised a list of the Best Alexa Betting Apps to raise your game.

If you get a chance give them a go and let me know what you think of them in the comments section below.

It seems like the sports betting industry isn’t ready for voice assisted betting…

4 Catalysts to spark voice search betting

After some rather disappointing results, here’s what I believe we need before an Alexa Betting app will enter the mainstream:

1. Tech Takeover

As with most secular trends, a young scrappy start-up company is more likely to change the betting landscape than one of the “old guard” bookmakers such as Betfair or Paddy Power.

Why?

Take online search as an example. It wasn’t Microsoft, Apple or even IBM that lead the way in online search engines with their huge cash pile and infinite resources available. It was Google that came out of the dorms of Stamford university by two young software engineers that to this day dominates the market.

Start-ups are more likely to take a risk and quickly pivot when they see trends or shifts in the market.

2. Visual Interface

place a bet using amazon alexa
Even Amazon realises some search terms still require a display and so have recently released the Echo Show.

I do believe that unless we have some sort of visual display to view the vast amount of odds available for a particular game, it’s going to be very difficult for voice search to gain traction.

Humans find it difficult to store more than several pieces of information at any one time. So if you’re bombarded with multiple odds via voice it’s near impossible to keep track of it all.

Some way of connecting to your TV (be it HDMI or over WIFI) that allows you to visually see and choose the odds just by speaking to Alexa.

More recently Google and Amazon have released smart home devices with a 7” built-in display. So now you can see the results from your query.

This could be the first step to making voice-assisted betting a reality.

3. Advanced Developer Code

You’re only as good as the tools you use and the main reason why Amazon Alexa has become so popular is down to the low-level source code libraries that makes recognising voice and regional dialects so good.

As Amazon continues to improve the core library code, the better the chances of a developer creating new an innovative ways for users to search for queries using voice and paying for services without having to find your debit card.

4. Secular Shift to Voice Control

Consumer trends and preferences will always dictate that way businesses pivot to new technologies. We’re already seeing a significant shift towards voice searches but industries have been slow to catch on.

In the next couple of years you will see more and more companies realise the potential of this ground breaking tech and begin to develop their own apps to improve their bottom-line.

Will we place a bet using Alexa in the future?

To be honest I think it’s entirely possible…

All the pieces are there. From a shift in consumer search preferences, to home hubs with the technology to either have a visual display included or to be connected to.

I think it will require a lot of creativity, and the layout for a voice-assisted betting site could look drastically different to what we’re currently used to today.

But given the current demand for voice search, it’s just a matter of time before we’ll be say “Hey Alexa, place a Paddy Power bet on Spurs winning today”.

Casino Bonus Offers June 2019

With the deluge of rain we’ve had over the past few weeks, it’s hard to say that summer is finally here.

So while we wait for the glorious sunshine to finally make it’s way from over the med, i’ve short-listed some of the best casino offers for June 2019.

This month we’ve only listed casino’s with a +4.5 star rating from our reviews page, you can checkout the full list in our reviews.

Casino Offers June 2019

Arcade Spins – 25 free spins

First up is Arcade Spins.

 

This cool retro-style slots site is perfect for those longing for a bit of 80’s nostalgia.

Right now you can get 25 Free Spins on Sharknado when you deposit just £10. Just be sure to use the promo code PLAY25 to get this deal.

Any free spins winnings will be capped at £2.50 and expire within 7 days, so make sure you don’t lose them by using the spins as soon as. As you would expect, this offer is only available to new customers only, so if you’ve had this before you won’t receive them.

High roller Casino – 50 free Spins + 20 Coins

I think the whole team here agrees that this is the best online casino site by a country mile. With custom made avatars and tournaments where you can steal coins from other online players, what’s not to like!

High Roller has an awesome new offer for players this month. Simply sign-up and get Wager-Free Bet on Dreamcatcher plus 50 Free Spins and 20 coins in your wallet.

To get this incredible deal you need to deposit a minimum of £20. You’ll then get £1 wager-free spin on Dreamcatcher and 10 free spins on selected games for each day, for the next 5 days. Free spins do come with a 35x wager requirement and games have different weighting. For more details you can view their T&C’s.

Betvictor Casino – Wager £10 Get £50 Bonus

Currently Betvictor has one of the most generous offers of any bookmaker out there. New Players that wager £10 will get £50 in bonuses, here’s what you’ll get:

£20 Slot bonus, a £10 Table Games bonus, £10 Live Casino bonus and a £10 Instant Win bonus. It all come to an incredible £50 worth of bonuses.

The only thing to be aware of is that Betvictor has slightly different wagering for each bonus before you can withdraw any winnings. Checkout their terms and conditions for more details.

Miami Dice – £300 First Deposit Bonus + 50 Free Spins

Finally a classic which takes it’s inspiration from one of the best dressed detective shows of the 80’s. Miami Dice is all about sharp white suits, guns, girls and fast super-cars.

They also happen to have an impressive first deposit offer of £300 Welcome Bonus + 50 Free Spins. Not only that but you can also get up to a staggering £1300 across your first 3x deposits, lets break it down so you know what to expect:

You will need to place a minimum deposit of £20. Maximum bonus bets are limited to £5 and bonus spins must be used within 72 hours, so make sure you don’t loose them. All bonus funds must also be used within 30 days and are subject to a 35x wagering before you can cash out any winnings. For this and all of their T&C’s check the link included.

So across all four offers you can swoop up £350 plus 125 Free spins, hopefully that should keep you going while we all wait for the weather to pick up. Enjoy!

XI Top-Class Football Players Out of Contract – Free Transfer 2019

players on free transfer 2019

You won’t believe which football players are out of contract and available on a free transfer.

We’ve selected the best XI players that you club could be signing this summer!

11. Dani Alves

There’s speculation that the right-back is eager to make a move to an “exciting” Premier League club before retirement.

But at 36 the former Brazilian international may not have the premier pick of clubs that he’s use to, having played most of his outstanding career with Barcelona and more recently at PSG.

Alves is currently in talk with PSG to extend his contract for a further 12 months, that is unless another European club comes in and offer him a better deal. But it’s unlikely any British club other than Manchester City, could afford the defenders current salary.

Here’s hoping he makes a move to the Prem!

10. Franck Ribery

Having won his ninth title with Bayern Munich and becoming the Bundesliga’s all-time record champion, we learned early this month that Ribéry would be leaving the club.

It’s unthinkable that a Champions League and FIFA World Cup winner could leave on a free transfer, but at 36 years-old it appears to be a mutual decision between the player and the club which allows the Frenchman to explore his options.

Even at 36, the Frenchman will not be short of offers and could be an interesting move for any club looking for an experienced world-class player.

9. Samir Nasri

Former Manchester City and Arsenal star will be keen to get his football career back on track following a 12 month ban from UEFA.

West Ham United gave Nasri a lifeline in the second half of this season, but the Frenchman has struggled to break into the first team on a regular basis, having only started in 5 Premier League games in the second half of the season.

With no other option but to move on, Nasri has the experience to perform at the highest level, but in this high-tempo modern era, chances of joining a top tier club look slim.

8. Yacine Brahimi

It’s unthinkable that Porto who themselves are in financial issues, have let Brahimi’s contract run down.

The Algerian winger has spent most of his professional career at Porto scoring 36 goals in 139 appearances.

Both Wolves and Everton were eager to sign Brahimi last summer for around £22million. Now that the 28 year-old winger is out of contract and shown an interest in moving to the Premier League, he won’t be short of offers.

7. Daniel Sturridge

The Liverpool forward has simply failed to impress this season and this time there’s no excuse.

Sturridge has had a decent run in 2018/19 making 20 appearances. But with only 4 goals to his tally (that’s 3 goals short of James Milner scorecard!) it’s unlikely that the striker will make the cut as Klopp will be keen to strengthen his side for a title push next season.

Having gone on loan to West Bromwich Albion in 2018 it’s unlikely that Sturridge will want to take a step down to the Championship. But at 31yrs and having played a full season injury-free he may be a decent signing for low-league club.

6. Arjen Robben

players on free transfer 2019

Since joining Bayern Munich from Real Madrid in 2009 for £22 million, the midfielder has won scored 147 goals in 338 games for the club, winning a staggering 8 Bundesliga titles in the process.

Before then the Dutchman had also won league titles with PSV, Chelsea and Real Madrid.

Even at 35 years old, given Robben’s work-rate there is still time left for the Dutchman to make a switch before hanging up his boots.

Leicester appear to be in the front-seat to sign the winger on a free transfer. Bookmakers now have him at odds of 2/1 to move to the King Power stadium.

5. James Milner

Some pundits have warned Liverpool would be crazy to let the defender go this summer, given how instrumental Milner has been taking the Merseyside club to within a point of the Premier League.

With two league titles under his belt at Manchester City and the prospect of lifting the Champions League trophy against Spurs on June 1st, Milner will not be short of offers.

But at 33 years old it may not be at one of the top flight clubs that he’s use to.

4. Gary Cahill

The Chelsea defender has recently slammed Maurizio Sarri for his treatment of the player, so it appears the door is firmly closed on his career at Chelsea.

Cahill is one of England’s most decorated center-backs, winning the Premier League twice for Chelsea and the Champions League and Europa Cup, as well as two FA Cup’s and a League Cup to boot.

West Ham United have already eyed a move for Cahill to join them ahead of the summer break. But given the quality of this player and even at 33, it’s likely Cahill will keep his options open and sign for a top European club in the summer.

3. Mario Balotelli

Famously remembered for his bust-up with Roberto Mancini at Manchester City in 2013, the striker had a successful spell at AC Milan, winning back to back titles three years on the trot.

Having spent the past three years at Nice and more recently Marseille, Balotelli has confirmed he will be leaving the French club this summer for new opportunities.

At just 28 the striker has the experience at top-flight clubs at a prime age. The Italian appears to be more disciplined and focused than the early years in his career.

But it may take a more charismatic manager to get the best out of the player, otherwise his personality could rattle the dressing room.

2. Antonio Valencia

footballer players out of contract 2019

Having spent most of his professional career at Manchester United since joining in 2009, Antonio Valencia has won countless trophies including the Premier League twice, FA Cup and Europa League.

Valenica may not have the best goal scoring ratio, having netted 17 goals in 241 games, but the winger has been crucial when United have been on the attack.

At 33 years old he may not have the pace for a winger to remain at the top flight of English football. But a mid-tier club could grab a bargain with a quality player of Valencia’s caliber.

1. Ander Herrera

The 29-year-old midfielder was an unsung hero for many Manchester United fans having joined the club back in 2014.

While the Spaniard never cemented a consistent role under Jose Mourinho, it was Solskjaer who gave the midfielder a second chance which had a huge impact to results early on.

With Manchester United still in transition Herrera has called time on his career at Old Trafford.

The Spaniard is currently in talk with PSG for a move which could see the midfielder earn a staggering £300,000 a week.

RANDOM POSTS

Paddy Power announces £10b merger with PokerStars

Betfair and Paddy Power's parent company Flutter Entertainment announced last week its intention to acquire Stars Group in a deal worth £10 billion. The merger...