Isle of Man: an eGaming regulator designed for today

01 July 2020

The global online gambling industry is going through a regulatory revolution, with vast swathes of the map changing from grey to white. 

Markets around the world are embracing frameworks and requiring operators to meet clearly defined standards. 

As a result, licensed operators are diverting significant funds and resources towards improving compliance, ensuring they play by the rules.

What’s more, those that have in the past operated without meeting licensing requirements now face an adapt or die situation. 

Compliance should not be feared; indeed, it allows operators and suppliers to unlock the true potential of their business while ensuring consumers are properly protected. 

When done by an established and experienced regulator, wings are not clipped – instead, businesses are given the right environment in which to fly. 

The Isle of Man has been licensing online gambling operators for 20 years and has established itself as one of the most respected and trusted regulators in the world. Over time, we have fine-tuned our framework so that it is powerful, yet nimble, so that it can keep pace with the fast-moving nature of the sector. 

Our mission and purpose is clear and simple. 

We are here to protect consumers by ensuring that operators and suppliers meet the highest possible standards when it comes to responsible gambling, KYC and AML. 

Our three core principles are: 

  • Keep gambling crime free
  • Protect young children and the vulnerable
  • Ensure facilities offered are fair and that players receive their true winnings

We apply these principles to the operators and suppliers that we license. 

Our process is so robust that in the two decades that we've been licensing eGaming organisations, not once have we had a player lose funds due to a company failing. 

This is an incredible achievement, and is part of the reason why other regulators from around the world are so keen to leverage our skills, expertise and knowledge. 

As such, we hold Memorandums of Understanding with regulators in the UK, Alderney, Malta, Estonia, Denmark, the Seychelles and Jersey. 

In addition to this, we are assisting regulators in emerging markets such as Africa and South East Asia.

Members of the Isle of Man team also speak regularly at industry events to educate key decision makers on the need for regulation.  

How we do it: 

Our framework is applied to operators and suppliers by a team of experts who live and breathe eGaming, and who know exactly how to ensure any business is 100% compliant. 

We work hand in hand with all of our licensees to gain a complete understanding of their business and how to align it with our requirements via our team and our local ecosystem of professional service providers.

The licences we offer include: 

Full licence – this licence covers all verticals including casino, sports betting, poker, bingo, lottery, daily fantasy sports and esports. 

The whole process takes around 10-12 weeks once a complete application has been lodged and the cost is £35,000 

Network licence – this is for operators or suppliers who want to offer their product/platform to other operators worldwide, who can then send players to play on the Network Licence holder’s servers without a requirement for re-registration. This is most appropriate for pooled jackpots, poker networks etc. The cost of this is £50,000. 

B2B software supplier licence – This is an elective licence, meaning it is possible to offer software provision services from the Isle of Man and to Isle of Man B2C licensees with or without a licence. After receiving numerous requests from Software Suppliers who wanted to demonstrate their credibility by showing the highly regarded Isle of Man badge on their website this licence was launched in 2019.

Benefits include being automatically placed on the Gambling Supervision Commission’s game registry and the kudos that an Isle of Man licence brings any business in the sector. 

What makes us different? 

Our framework is the most comprehensive and no other jurisdiction has our level of skill, experience and expertise. 

The global online gambling sector is constantly evolving and at an extremely quick pace. Blockchain, esports, VR and AI are just some of the trends impacting the market. 

While each provides tremendous opportunities for operators, suppliers and consumers, each throws up challenges that must be overcome. 

This is particularly true when it comes to protecting consumers and their funds and ensuring integrity and trust in the products and services businesses offer. 

For example, the Isle of Man is a pioneer and leader when it comes to regulating and licensing break-through technologies such as blockchain and cryptocurrencies. 

We are a member of the British Blockchain Association and became the first regulator to license a blockchain lottery platform. 

We continue to establish ourselves as a leader in blockchain as our blockchain accelerator initiative enters its second year - a sandbox environment where blockchain entrepreneurs can access the facilities, support and advice they need to grow and succeed. 

In addition to blockchain, we have quickly become a leader in licensing top tier esports betting operators including Unikrn, Rivalry and Luckbox, and we will soon be launching our new esports proposition.

Additional benefits: 

Our experience in the eGaming industry makes us the perfect licensing partner for operators and suppliers in markets all over the world. This is certainly the case for those looking to expand into new and emerging markets such as Africa, Asia, LATAM and beyond.  

Other upsides include; an established eGaming ecosystem with support and facilities such as corporate service providers, lawyers, payment service providers, recruiters and banks. 

The Island also provides a stable and technologically advanced infrastructure with six world-class data centres, surplus power generation and, best of all, no power cuts. 

Grants and financial assistance are available for businesses relocating to the Island, as are employee relocation benefits. 

What are you waiting for?  

Regulation and compliance may be a hot topic right now, but it has been our focus and passion for almost 20 years. 

Our formidable reputation has been hard earned and has only been possible because of our best-in-class regulatory framework and highly skilled and dedicated team. 

We remain at the cutting edge of the industry, which evolves on a monthly basis, to ensure we continue to protect consumers while allowing business to be successful and sustainable.  


To find out more about online gambling licensing in the Isle of Man, click here.