|The UK based online betting company, is looking at targeting Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Thailand, and China, where betting is vastly popular but illegal, as a fifth target, but likely to be a much more distant prospect”-as explained by Tim Levene, the MD of the company.|
There are issues of legality facing Betfair in their quest with varying levels of prohibition affecting both land and Internet based gambling in these regions. Levene goes on to explain the logic behind the move, and their planned attack to try and enter the market: “This the most sophisticated gambling market in the world, and it is not legal in almost every jurisdiction. My remit is to start to lobby governments and existing operators, to talk to them about what a betting exchange is and how it could help them and, two, how Betfair could potentially be a solution in their fight against illegal gambling.”
In Singapore and Hong Kong, where betting is legal, it is state owned operators who monopolise the areas, while in other areas the majority of business is conducted by illegal underground operations. With football becoming extremely popular in Asia, Levene has let it be known that in the first approach his company will be trying to promote football betting services rather than horse racing or other sports.