The Gambling Commission website uses cookies to make the site work better for you. Some of these cookies are essential to how the site functions and others are optional. Optional cookies help us remember your settings, measure your use of the site and personalise how we communicate with you. Any data collected is anonymised and we do not set optional cookies unless you consent.

Set cookie preferences

You've accepted all cookies. You can change your cookie settings at any time.

Skip to main content

Definitions of terms

Gambling Industry Statistics and regulatory returns use words which are defined within the Gambling Act 2005 and the National Lottery Act etc. Act 1993.

3 Card Poker
3 Card Poker is a card game based on poker.
Account: Customer
Account: Customer is a record, held by an Operating Licence holder, of a customer of that operator, held for the purpose of facilitating the provision of gambling. Within Industry Statistics only customer accounts for remote gambling are published.
Account: Operator
Account: Operator is a record, held by the Gambling Commission, of an entity (for example, public limited company, limited company, partnership, individual) that holds one or more Operating Licences issued by the Gambling Commission.
Active number of accounts (GC licenced facilities)
Active number of accounts for Gambling Commission licensed activities refers to the total number of remote gambling accounts that have been used by customers to gamble on Gambling Commission licensed activities within the last 12 months. These figures do not include suspended or dormant accounts.
Adult Gaming Centre (AGC)
Adult Gaming Centre (AGC) means a premise in respect of which an adult gaming centre premises licence has effect. An AGC premises licence is a licence that authorises a premise to be used for making Category B gaming machines available for use. Such a premise can comprise a limited number of B3 and B4 machines and an unlimited number of category C and D machines. No one under the age of 18 is allowed to enter. [GA2005, s238]
American roulette
American roulette is a casino table game involving the use of a roulette wheel.
Arcades
Arcades is a collective term for Adult Gaming Centres, Licensed Family Entertainment Centres and Family Entertainment Centres. Within the Gambling Industry Statistics publication, Arcades refers to Adult Gaming Centres and Licensed Family Entertainment Centres only.
Betting
Betting is the making or accepting a bet on (a) the outcome of a race, competition or other event or process, (b) the likelihood of anything occurring or not occurring, or (c) whether anything is or is not true. For the purpose of Gambling Commission regulation, a "bet" does not include a bet the making or accepting of which is a regulated activity within the meaning of section 22 of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (c.8). [GA2005, s9]
Betting (non-remote)
Betting (non-remote) refers to betting which is carried out on course, off course (eg in a betting shop), or via a pool betting arrangement.
Betting (non-remote): Gaming machines
Gaming machines sited within a gambling premise licensed for betting.
Betting (remote)
Betting (remote) refers to betting in which persons participate by the use of remote communication using the internet, telephone, television, radio, or any other kind of electronic or other technology for facilitating communication.
Betting exchange
Also known as a “betting intermediary” means a person who provides a service designed to facilitate the making or acceptance of bets between others.
Betting intermediary
See Betting exchange.
Bingo
Bingo means any version of that game, irrespective of by what name it is described. [GA2005, s353] It is commonly a game of chance in which players match randomly drawn numbers against a printed or electronically-generated card of numbers.
Bingo (non-remote)
Bingo (non-remote) refers to bingo games which are carried out in a licensed premise (eg. bingo hall) and not via remote communication.
Bingo (non-remote): Gaming machines
Gaming machines sited within a gambling premise licensed for bingo.
Bingo (remote)
Bingo (remote) refers to bingo or bingo-style games in which persons participate by the use of remote communication using the internet, telephone, television, radio, or any other kind of electronic or other technology for facilitating communication.
Bingo games (non-remote)
Bingo games (non-remote) refers to main stage bingo, mechanised bingo and prize bingo which are carried out in a licensed premise (eg. bingo hall) and not via remote communication.
Bingo games (remote)
Bingo games (remote) refers to bingo or bingo-style games in which persons participate by the use of remote communication using the internet, telephone, television, radio, or any other kind of electronic or other technology for facilitating communication.
Blackjack
Blackjack is a gambling card game in which players try to acquire cards with a face value totalling 21 and no more.
Cabinets
See Gaming machine.
Card game
Card game within Industry Statistics refers to casino card game-style games played in remote casinos. We discontinued using this term from April 2017 onwards.
Casino
A Casino is an arrangement whereby people are given an opportunity to participate in one or more casino games. [GA2005, s7]
Casino (non-remote)
Casino (non-remote) refers to casino games which are carried out in a gambling premise (eg. casino) and not via remote communication.
Casino (non-remote): Gaming machines
Gaming machines sited within a gambling premise licensed as a casino.
Casino (remote)
Casino (remote) refers to casino games in which persons participate by the use of remote communication using the internet, telephone, television, radio, or any other kind of electronic or other technology for facilitating communication.
Casino drop
Casino drop is the amount of money exchanged for chips in a casino by a player or players.
Casino games
Casino games are games of chance which not equal chance gaming. [GA2005, s7]
Casino stud poker
Casino stud poker is a casino card game derived from five-card stud poker. Unlike standard poker games it is played against the house rather than against other players.
Casino win
Casino win is the amount of money retained by a casino from the casino drop, after winnings are paid out.
Cricket
Cricket refers to betting on the sport of cricket.
Customer account
See Account: Customer.
Dice
Dice games are table games involving the use of dice.
Dogs
Dogs refers to betting on the sport of dog-racing. In Great Britain, greyhound racing is the dominant dog-racing sport for betting.
Electronic gaming
Electronic gaming refers to facilities for non-remote casino gambling that enable multiple players to participate in the same casino game (typically roulette) via electronic means, where the dealer is located at a different table. Note that in Industry Statistics, table numbers for electronic gaming refers to the number of player positions not the number of tables.
eSports
eSports refers to betting on eSports, a form of competitions using video games.
External Lottery Manager
An External Lottery Manager (ELM) is a person that makes arrangements for a lottery on behalf of a society or authority of which he is not (a) a member, (b) an officer, or (c) employee under a contract of employment. [GA2005, s257]
Family Entertainment Centre (FEC)
A Family Entertainment Centre (FEC) means a premise (other than an Adult Gaming Centre) wholly or mainly used for making gaming machines available for use. Such a premise requires a permit issued by a licensing authority. It is not licensed by the Gambling Commission. It can comprise an unlimited number of category D machines. Under 18s are allowed in FECs. Data from FECs is not included in Gambling Industry Statistics publications. [GA2005, s238]
Financials
Financials refers to betting on financial products, such as binary options. We discontinued reporting financials as a remote betting category from April 2018 onwards.
Football
Football refers to betting on the sport of football.
Gambling
Gambling is gaming, betting and participating in a lottery. [GA2005, s3]
Gambling (non-remote)
Gambling (non-remote) means gambling which is carried out in a gambling premises and not via remote communication.
Gambling (remote)
Gambling (remote) means gambling in which persons participate by the use of remote communication using the internet, telephone, television, radio, or any other kind of electronic or other technology for facilitating communication. [GA2005, s4]
Gambling Act 2005
The Gambling Act 2005 is primary legislation which governs a unified regulatory network for the regulation of all forms of gambling in the United Kingdom, except the National Lottery.
Gambling (Licensing and Advertising) Act 2004
The Gambling (Licensing and Advertising) Act 2014 is primary legislation which makes provision for aspects of licensing and advertising of gambling in the United Kingdom. A key provision is the requirement for all remote gambling operators (whether based in or outside Great Britain) to be required to obtain a licence from the Gambling Commission to enable them to transact with British customers and advertise in Britain.
Gambling premise
A gambling premise is one used to (a) operate a casino, (b) provide facilities for the playing of bingo, (c) making a gaming machine available for use, (d) provide other facilities for gaming, or (e) provide facilities for betting (whether by making or accepting bets, by acting as a betting intermediary or by providing other facilities for the making or accepting of bets). Exceptions apply, including the use of a track by a person for accepting bets, clubs and miners' welfare institutions, premises with alcohol licence, travelling fairs, prize gaming, private gaming and betting, and non-commercial gaming. [GA2005, s37]
Gambling software
Gambling software means computer software for use in connection with remote gambling but does not include anything for use solely in connection with a gaming machine. [GA2005, s41] Gaming Software is also a type of Operating Licence that allows an entity to manufacture, supply, adapt or install gambling software which is used by operators licensed by the Gambling Commission (regardless of where they are based), or (if based in Great Britain) to manufacture, supply, adapt or install gambling software used by operators that do not have a Gambling Commission licence and are based abroad. Various licence types permit the licence holder to conduct all or some of these gambling services.
Gambling workforce
Gambling workforce means the number of persons employed in licensed gambling activities. An employee is anyone that a licensed gambling operator directly pays from its payroll, in return for carrying out a full time or part time job or being on a training scheme (including persons who are temporarily absent but still being paid, for example those who are sick or on maternity or paternity leave). It does not include (a) employees not employed in relation to the licensed activity, (b) former employees only receiving a pension, (c) self-employed workers, (d) working owners who are not paid via PAYE, (e) staff who are not directly employed (for example, agency staff), or (f) volunteers. Each person employed is counted as one, regardless of whether they work full time or part time. It is reported to us as at a point nearest to the end of an operator's reporting period.
Gaming
Gaming is playing a game of chance for a prize. It includes a game that involves both an element of chance and an element of skill, a game that involves an element of chance that can be eliminated by superlative skill, and a game that is presented as involving an element of chance, but does not include a sport. [GA2005, s6]
Gaming machine
A gaming machine is a machine which is designed or adapted for use by individuals to gamble (whether or not it can be used for other purposes). This definition includes traditional "fruit machines" and machines on which virtual betting and gaming by machine as well as virtual lotteries. It includes Fixed Odds Betting Terminals. For regulatory purposes, this definition applies to only gaming machines situated in Great Britain or anything done in Great Britain in relation to gaming machines. It refers to any apparatus which uses or applies to mechanical power, electrical power or both. It excludes a domestic or dual-use computer, a telephone or other machine for facilitating communication, a machine which is designed or adapted for betting only on future real events, a machine which disposes lottery tickets or otherwise enables a person to enter a lottery (with caveats), a machine designed or adapted for the playing of bingo by way of prize gaming (with caveats), a machine designed or adapted to be controlled or operated by an individual employed or concerned in arranging for others to play a real game of chance or used in connection with a real game of chance the arrangements for which are controlled or operated by an individual (with caveats).
Gaming machine category
Note that some gaming machines enable play on multiple games, which may be of different gaming machine categories. When reporting the quantity of gaming machines held, licence holders report the numbers of machines at the highest category of game available on it. For example, where a single machine offers both category B3 and category C games, this is reported as one cabinet only at category B3. However, when reporting GGY, licence holders split the total GGY for the gaming machine by the category of games played. For example, the total GGY for all category B3 games on the machine and the total GGY for all category C games on the machine.
Gaming Machine Technical
Gaming Machine Technical is a type of Operating Licence that allows an entity to manufacture, supply, install, adapt, maintain and repair categories of gaming machine or parts of a gaming machine (which includes gaming machine software). Various licence types permit the licence holder to conduct all or some of these gambling services.
Golf
Golf refers to betting on the sport of golf.
Gross Gambling Yield (GGY)
Gross Gambling Yield (GGY) is calculated in accordance with the following formula (a + b - c), where (a) is the total of any amounts that will be paid to the licensee by way of stakes in the relevant period in connection with the activities authorised by the licence, (b) is the total of any amounts (exclusive of value added tax) that will otherwise accrue to the licensee in the relevant period directly in connection with the activities authorised by the licence, and (c) is the total of any amounts that will be deducted by the licensee in respect of the provision of prizes or winnings in the relevant period in connection with the activities authorised by the licence. Free bets or bonuses are only counted when calculating GGY if the customer has the unrestricted right to opt instead to receive a cash equivalent to the value of that free bet or bonus. Loyalty schemes such as ‘rake back’ or ‘VIP cash back’ or similar are not counted towards (a), (b) or (c). Within Industry Statistics, figures for National Lottery and Lotteries are GGY-equivalent and relate to the proceeds from ticket sales minus the amount given out in prizes.
Horses
Horses refers to betting on horse racing events.
Lottery
A lottery is an arrangement where (a) persons are required to pay in order to participate in the arrangement, (b) in the course of the arrangement one or more prizes are allocated to one or more members of a class, and (c) the prizes are allocated by a process which relies wholly on chance. In a complex lottery, the prizes are allocated by a series of processes, and the first of those prizes relies wholly on chance. [GA2005, s14]
Lotteries
Lotteries data within Industry Statistics refers to large society lotteries and local authority lotteries. It does not include the National Lottery or small society lotteries.
Licence Conditions and Codes of Practice (LCCP)
Licence Conditions and Codes of Practice (LCCP) is a document produced by the Gambling Commission detailing the manner in which facilities for gambling shall be provided. [GA2005, s24]
Licensed Family Entertainment Centre (LicFEC)
A Licensed Family Entertainment Centre (LicFEC) means a premise in respect of which a family entertainment centre premises licence has effect. A family entertainment centre premises licence is a licence that authorises a premise to be used for making Category C gaming machines available for use. Such a premise can comprise an unlimited number of Category C and D machines. Under 18s are allowed in LicFECs, but not into the area offering Category C machines. [GA2005, s238]
Lottery Duty (National Lottery)
Lottery Duty refers to the amount due from the licensee by way of Lottery Duty pursuant to the Finance Act 1993.
Main stage bingo
Main stage bingo refers to bingo games where a caller calls out the numbers as they are randomly selected. Main stage bingo can be played as a link, where a caller in one premise calls the numbers and his or her voice is broadcast across to multiple premises taking part in the link. In Industry Statistics main stage bingo refers to non-remote bingo games only.
Mechanised bingo
Mechanised bingo refers to bingo games where the selection and calling of numbers is achieved by a mechanised device. Mechanised bingo can be played as a link, where players in different premises play the same games. In Industry Statistics mechanised bingo refers to non-remote bingo games only.
National Lottery
The National Lottery means all the lotteries that form part of the National Lottery, taken as a whole. A lottery forms part of the National Lottery if it is promoted or proposed to be promoted by the person licensed to run the National Lottery and in pursuance of an agreement that has been made between that person and the lottery's promoter or proposed promoter. The promotion of the lottery must be authorised by a licence that has been granted to its promoter or proposed promoter. [NL1993, s1]
National Lottery etc. Act 1993
The National Lottery etc. Act 1993 is primary legislation which governs the regulation of the National Lottery in the United Kingdom.
New account registrations
New account registrations refers to the number of customer accounts that have been opened for customers to gamble on Gambling Commission licensed activities within the last 12 months. Within Industry Statistics only new account registrations for remote gambling are published.
Non-remote gambling
See Gambling (non-remote).
Numbers
Numbers refers to betting on lottery-styled games at fixed odds.
Off-course
Off-course refers to betting which is conducted outside of a racecourse or track (eg in a betting shop).
On-course
On-course refers to betting which is conducted at a racecourse or track.
Operating Licence (OL)
Operating Licence (OL) means a licence which states that it authorises the licensee (a) to operate a casino, (b) to provide facilities for playing bingo, (c) to provide facilities for betting other than pool betting, (d) to provide facilities for pool betting, (e) to act as a betting intermediary, (f) to make gaming machines available for use in an adult gaming centre, (g) to make gaming machines available for use in a family entertainment centre, (h) to manufacture, supply, install, adapt, maintain or repair a gaming machine, or part of a gaming machine, (i) to manufacture, supply, install or adapt gambling software, or (j) to promote a lottery. [GA2005, s65]
Operator account
See Account: Operator.
Over-the-counter (OTC)
Over-the-counter (OTC) refers to betting in a betting premises which is not gaming machines betting. An exception is betting made using Self-Service Betting Terminal (SSBTs), which is included within over-the-counter betting data.
Peer to Peer
Peer-to-Peer within Industry Statistics refers to poker games where players play each other - as opposed to playing with the gambling operator - within a remote casino.
Personal Licence
Personal Licence (PL) means a licence which authorises an individual to perform the functions of a specified management office, or to perform a specified operational function, in connection with (a) the provision of facilities for gambling, (b) a person who provide facilities for gambling.
Pool
See Pool betting.
Pool betting
Pool betting is generally regarded as any form of betting which is not at fixed odds. It differs from fixed odds betting in that it may not be possible for the punter to know at the time he/she makes a bet, what his ultimate winnings may be. The stakes of each of the punters in a pool bet are aggregated and a proportion of the pool is then allocated to one or more of the winners. It is legally defined as betting made on terms that all or part of winnings (a) shall be determined by reference to the aggregate of stakes paid or agreed to be paid by the persons betting, (b) shall be divided among the winners, or (c) shall or may be something other than money. Most pool betting in Great Britain is on horses, greyhounds or football. [GA2005, s12]
Premise
See Gambling premise.
Primary contribution (National Lottery)
Primary contribution refers to the amount payable to good causes from sales after lottery duty, retailers' commission, prizes, retention by the licensee and a number of other adjustments permitted under the National Lottery licence. Primary contribution is transferred together with unclaimed prizes and other miscellaneous payments due under the Third National Lottery Section 5 Licence on a weekly basis to the National Lottery Distribution Fund.
Prize bingo
Prize bingo is a bingo game played for a set prize or prizes determined neither by reference to the number of persons playing nor the amount paid for or raised by the gaming. In Industry Statistics prize bingo refers to non-remote bingo games only.
Proprietary Gross Gambling Yield (Proprietary GGY)
Proprietary GGY is Gross Gambling Yield retained by remote operators which is not subject to a revenue share agreement (ie. is completely retained by the individual operator).
Punto banco
Punto banco is a gambling card game where, instead of playing each other, players play against the bank. The aim is to obtain nine points or get as close to nine as possible. It is typically played in a casino.
Regulatory return
A regulatory return is a means of collecting a range of information from Operating Licence holders within the gambling industry in order to monitor compliance with gambling legislation, regulations and the Licence Conditions and Codes of Practice, and to inform the Gambling Commission’s understanding of the gambling market.
Remote betting
See Betting (remote).
Remote bingo
See Bingo (remote).
Remote casino
See Casino (remote).
Remote Casino, Betting & Bingo (RCBB)
Remote Casino, Betting & Bingo (RCBB) is remote gambling on casino, betting and bingo products.
Remote gambling
See Gambling (remote).
Retailers' commission (National Lottery)
Retailers' commission refers to the amount of commission paid to retailers for the sale of National Lottery products.
Retention by the Licensee (National Lottery)
Retention by the Licensee refers to the amount of money retained by the licensee in to fund the operation of the National Lottery including the amount the Licensee retains as profit.
Revenue share Gross Gambling Yield (Revenue share GGY)
Revenue share GGY is defined as a Gross Gambling Yield which is subject to a contractual arrangement to be shared between two or more Gambling Commission licensed operators.
Roulette
Roulette within Industry Statistics refers to casino roulette-style games played in remote casinos. For roulette in non-remote casinos, see American roulette.
Slots
Slots within Industry Statistics refers to casino gaming machine-style games played in remote casinos. For slots in non-remote casinos and other non-remote premises, see Gaming machines.
Table game
Table game within Industry Statistics refers to casino table game-style games played in remote casinos. We discontinued using this term from April 2017 onwards.
Trading room
Trading room refers to premises which provides access to live sporting pictures and remote communication such as an internet-enabled computer intended to be used for betting via a betting exchange. Consumers wishing to bet in-running, most commonly through betting exchanges, pay the trading room operators for use of these facilities. The operator's involvement is limited to administering the arrangements for gambling by others.
Turnover
Turnover is the amount of monies accrued through the sale of an operator’s gambling products before winnings and overheads/expenses are deducted. It does not include turnover from gaming machines, gambling software or gaming machine technical, or a gambling operator’s wider operations (eg food and beverages).
Virtuals
Virtuals refers to betting on computer-generated virtual events which use a random number generator to decide the outcome.
Previous page
Users of industry statistics
Next page
Methodology
Is this page useful?
Back to top