Isle of Man
The Isle of Man has become a model for online gaming countries due to the legislative framework set by the Electronic Transactions Act of 2000 and the Online Gambling Regulation Act 2001, which legalized online gaming operation in the country. Applications for online gaming licenses were initially accepted on the Isle of Man in June 2001. By 2002, licenses were distributed to five gaming operators from around the world. The rapid growth of the market, however, was followed by an even more rapid crash. By 2003, no gaming operators held a license from the island. The island is “White Listed” by the UK and the OECD respectively for eGaming and tax cooperation purposes, which allows Isle of Man licensees to advertise to the UK market.
There are three options for eGaming Licenses:
Full OGRA License: requires an initial application fee of GBP 5,000 and an annual fee of GBP 35,000 for a five-year duration period. A full license does not cover gambling activities of a parent or holding company or the operations of sister companies. A full OGRA license is required if any of the following types of online gambling are offered: Sportsbooks; Betting Exchanges; Casino Games (roulette, blackjack, slots, etc); Live Dealing; Peer to Peer Games (poker, bingo, backgammon, etc); Mobile Phone Betting; Fantasy Football or similar; Financial Trading (but not spread betting); Pari-mutuel and Pool Betting; Network Gaming; Lotteries; certain Spot-the-Ball-style games; Network Services.
Sub-Licenses: require the submission of an application and are designed for operators who enter into a contract with a provider that holds a full OGRA license. The costs related to a Sub-License are less than those for a full license but require a nonrefundable GBP 5,000 application fee. Once approved, the license has a five-year term and is subject to an annual license fee of GBP 5,000 per annum.
Isle of Man Network License: requires a GBP 5,000 application fee; GBP 50,000 annual fee; and GBP 5,000 per network partner. The license provides flexibility for future development and growth for every type of business model and new income streams: B2C; Affiliate 3rd Party; White Label; Sub-License; B2B Services. This solution offers low-cost duty starting at 1.5% on Gross Gaming Yield (GGY) and not turnover. The duty is only paid on the retained element of GGY in the Isle of Man, not from licensed operators in other countries. The current corporate tax on gaming companies is 0%. The Isle of Man’s arrangement with the EU ensures services provided to UK/EU individuals are VAT exempt, and in most cases customers from outside the EU and B2B partners are 0% rated.
In February 2010, the Isle of Man announced changes to its gambling regulations, now making it legal for iGaming firms to host or carry out their non-gambling-related activities such as marketing; software, skill games and disaster recovery without an Online Gambling Regulation Act 2001 license. Disaster Recovery permits immediate switchover for up to 90 days without a license.
Since April 1, 2010, licensing is overseen by the Department of Economic Development, formerly known as the Department of Trade and Industry.
The Isle of Man’s Department of Economic Development in conjunction with the Isle of Man College of Further and Higher Education will be offering and launching in January 2013 the world’s first accredited qualification in eGaming. It is to be delivered through a work-based, higher-education framework (WBIS) validated through the University of Chester as a postgraduate-level qualification. There are plans to offer it at an undergraduate level in due course. Currently eGaming is an important sector on the island, employing approximately 688 people.
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Isle of Man
Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission
St. Andrews House
Douglas, Isle of Man
United Kingdom IM1 2PX
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Isle of Man Jurisdiction News
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