Isle of Man: A foundation for success for eGaming companies

03 December 2020

The team at Affinity Group specialise in helping our clients through the licensing process and we are privileged to be able to not only offer them access to a world-leading regulatory framework but also guide them through a streamlined onboarding process.

Clients interested in acquiring a gaming licence in the Isle of Man make their initial enquiries with us for various reasons but, almost always, it is because of the licence’s strong reputation within the gambling industry. Here are some of the key reasons, the Isle of Man’s choice of licences are the go-to option for operators, software suppliers and other businesses in the eGaming space.


A streamlined, straightforward process

Operators enjoy the comfort of knowing that the licence application process is usually only 12 weeks from submission to approval and once licensed, their stakeholders, including investors, shareholders and customers, are safe in the knowledge that the operator has been through a robust process with a well-established and respected regulator.


The highest level of player protection

Another huge benefit is the Island’s player protection model, which ensures all licensees have the controls in place to fully protect all player funds. This model means that any players funds, whether deposits or winnings, customers have within a gaming firm regulated on Island are safe, secure and can be enforced by law. 

Both the public and private sector are, rightly, very proud of the fact that the Gambling Supervision Commission has to date never received a complaint from a player who has been unable to access their funds.


A range of options

An Isle of Man licence affords an operator the choice of several different routes to regulation covering an array of business models. 

The most popular option is the Full Licence, which covers all gaming avenues spanning sportsbook, poker, fantasy sports, casino, bingo, lotteries and more whilst allowing for B2C operations as well as the ability to offer sub-licences and white labels opportunities with B2B partners.  

The Network licence route encompasses everything the far-reaching offering under the full licence while permitting the holder to allow other operators located and licensed elsewhere to send their players to their servers in the Isle of Man, with no requirement for reregistration. 

A B2B software supplier licence is available, allowing the holder to offer software developed by the operator while the customer is responsible for all other aspects of the operation.

Offering further flexibility and focused regulation there are two types of software supplier licence – a standard fiat platform licence and a token/blockchain-enabled platform licence. 


A global reach

Another key distinct advantage of being licensing in the Isle of Man is the access it provides around the world.

Once licensed the onus is on the operator to ensure the legality of the countries it will be targeting using its licence. When a target jurisdiction has been identified, the regulator requires sight of the considerations showing the board of directors have taken relevant legal advice on the activity that it intends to undertake that demonstrates that the activity is legal in that particular country.

While the laws surrounding gambling continue to evolve around the globe there are many well equipped law firms with a wealth of experience in opining in this area and operators can normally engage with just one firm to provide multiple opinions.

Operators are opened up to a pool of potentially millions of customers who are based in jurisdictions without their own gambling regulation who can be given the comfort of being able to gamble on a well-regulated site.


Banking on success

Historically banking has been a major issue for operators, with the mere mention of betting activity resulting in the familiar institutions responding with a resounding no thanks.

Reassuringly perceptions of industry have evolved, largely due to the undeniable strength of regulation, resulting in the Island having a number of reputable banks who are pleased to work with Isle of Man licenced operators meaning not only the benefit of a robust banking infrastructure for the operator but the comfort that funds are well protected.


A world-leading infrastructure

As well as the many advantages of holding a reputable gambling licence, operators and businesses who make the Isle of Man their home benefit from a world-leading infrastructure.

Situated in the Irish Sea between the UK and Ireland; the Island is a self-governing British Crown Dependency with its own Government and laws while maintaining important ties with the UK.

Boasting the oldest parliament in the world, the Government’s commitment to promoting and enhancing the Island’s reputation means it is one of the world’s leading offshore financial centres, a well-respected international business centre and an established platform for business success and prosperity.

The Island’s commitment to establishing itself as a tier one jurisdiction for gaming regulation dates back to 2001 when it was one of the first jurisdictions to introduce regulation to benefit online operators while keeping customers protected.

Since then it has retained its status as a world class regulator by being quick to react to industry changes and emerging technologies attracting some of the largest operators in the global online gaming industry.

It is impossible to include all of the many benefits of the Isle of Man licence in a brief article but there are a few further key points that are aligned with the licence bringing even more value to operators that must be mentioned.

The Island has an advanced telecommunications infrastructure, so much so it has been used as a test bed for emerging technologies, its home to six world-class data centres, new businesses establishing on the Island can apply to the Isle of Man Government for financial assistance in the form of grants or loans and, finally, gambling duty is based on profit, not turnover, with very low rates - between 0.1 and 1.5 percent.


How Affinity Group can help

At Affinity Group we specialise in assisting clients throughout the licensing process, liaising with regulators and managing the project from start to finish. Among the first steps of the licensing process is to establish which Isle of Man gambling licence is most appropriate for our clients’ needs.  To find out more about how we can help get in touch with our team at