|A new online betting exchange is being planned for launch in the US later this month. An American businessman based in London has a new company, 1xInc.com, which is planning the launch of a new exchange called Betbug on 21 July in the States.|
Modelled on successful sites like Betfair, the new site is designed to operate as a file sharing system, similar to the way music program Kazaa operates- with bettors being able to offer bets to other people who have also downloaded the software. This new system would allow anyone who has downloaded the software to become a virtual bookmaker, deciding on the topic and terms of a wager and offering it up to others. O’Malia has commented on the planned site: “We are the Kazaa of betting, we let people search out other people directly who are interested in wagering”.
The revenue earned by the company is gained by a commission percentage of winner’s takings- indexed according to the size of the bet. Betbug will differ from the extremely successful Betfair, in that it does not operate with a central web site that visitors go to, to find people to bet against- instead using the afore-mentioned Kazaa-styled individualised method.
With online betting exchanges becoming increasingly popular, O’Malia is hoping to lure in similar revenue figures to Betfair- who now see one million wagers placed via the site every day. One stumbling block however is the continued legal question over online gambling activities, placed by the US federal government. O’Malia argues that his new venture should be exempt from this illegal status, as strictly speaking he is not operating as a bookmaker- neither setting the odds or participating in the wagers. However, keen to avoid any federal investigations or pressure the new business will be based in Toronto.