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BGLC sees declining sales from horse racing, sports betting

Published:Wednesday | June 25, 2014 | 12:00 AM

Tameka Gordon, Business Reporter

The Betting Gaming and Lotteries Commission (BGLC) has reported a 5.8 per cent decrease in sales from its horse racing and sports betting segments, declining to $7.3 billion for the 2012-13 financial year, down from $7.7 billion posted the previous year.

Racing promoter Caymanas Track Limited (CTL) contributed $4.1 billion for the period under review, a $157-million or 3.6 per cent decrease from the $4.3 billion posted the year prior, with bookmakers coming in at $3.1 billion or $295 million less than the $3.4 billion it posted during the prior year.

The betting sector comprises CTL, its network of 63 off-track betting parlours, 10 bookmakers and their network of 339 betting offices as well as 166 lounges across the island.

INCREASED COMPETITION

"The betting sector, horse-racing in particular, continued to be impacted negatively ... from competition from other gaming forms," the BGLC said in its annual report.

The regulatory body attributed the declining sales to a reduction in the number of local race days, which was cut from 83 to 80 as well as the cancellation of several local and overseas races.

Government levy on the sector, however, increased to $232.1 million, a growth of $6.99 million or 3.1 per cent, the BGLC said.

Despite the decline, the Commission's own net profit improved to $232.92 million up from $119.79 million in the year prior.

The regulator also closed the year with improved income of $579.89 million, an increase of $113.13 million, bolstered by unclaimed winnings of $88.33 million.

"This, in addition to a marginal decline ($17.84 million) in total expenses, resulted in the Commission recording a net profit ... of $232.92 million compared to $119.79 in the prior year," the BGLC said.

LOTTERY SALE DECLINE

Sales in the lotteries sector also saw a decrease, closing the year at $25.3 billion down from $26.1 billion the previous year.

Most games in the sector further saw decreased sales, the BGLC said, with Pick 3 recording the greatest decrease of $948 million.

Despite being the major contributor to the lottery segment, Cashpot sales declined by $756 million with Pick 2 declining by $350 million.

The Government's take of lottery sales, however, jumped by $407 million or 13.4 per cent to $3.4 billion over the $3 billion the year prior.

Lottery payouts for the period stood at $16.9 billion down from $18.4 billion.

With some 7,355 gaming machines licensed in the gaming sector, the BGLC collected $52.8 million in fees. The BGLC also received $13.3 million from prize competition applications for the period under review.

tameka.gordon@gleanerjm.com