‘Want to bet on it?’- A harmless statement of a game that begins with one’s childhood playmates, almost a certain way to prove a point to one’s peers and with authority. A simple game of probability and gut-based decision making, which is now one of the most flourishing industries across the world.
Betting is a game of probability but with a wager attached to it. It’s not only one of the most flourishing businesses across the world, but a culture in itself. The breeding ground for this culture, of course, is the sporting industry.
If you are someone watching your favorite sport, then well, your brain has already made predictions on the winner of the game. Two aspects, which qualify prediction to become a vet or a wager on the result. Most importantly, an opponent with a wager on a counter result.
Though countries like India do not legally permit Betting, there are countries where this is a profession to be in. This industry has its own set of brokers similar to those in the stock market. Like how one places a price on a stock with the help of a broker, this industry has its own set of middlemen called bookmakers or colloquially, ‘bookies’. Their main job is to keep a tab on transactions, payouts, debts, etc.
Today, with the influx of internet-based betting platforms, showcasing innovative betting offers has become a customer pull strategy. For instance, a Welcome bonus is a typical strategy used to entice new entrants. This is similar to any portal we use today, be it a travel aggregator or a food delivery portal.
There is a host of betting offers curated for existing players as well such as Free Bets, Boosted Odds, Price Boost, Cash Back, to name a few.
Just as the name suggests, a Free Bet is where the betting site or provider takes the risk and gets you into making a bet. Boosted Odds is an opportunity where the player gets an exponential excess potential to earn if a rare scenario occurs. Usually, these bets are placed on the side that is most likely to lose. Price Boost is a boost to the price of the bet, thereby giving the person placing the bet a better profit to pocket.
The Down Side
While betting has become a sport in itself, it is not far from controversies and the ability to damage beyond repair. Since the price of bets placed is very high, sports have often seen ugly scenarios of fixing scandals. Even in countries like India, where betting is illegal; careers have been sabotaged due to alleged player involvement in scandals such as match-fixing, spot-fixing, etc.
Another aspect to be kept in mind is that the quantum of money dealt with in these bets is so enormous that it often involves financiers from unlawful entities such as the underworld – the sort of middlemen who are ready to invest with a certain expectation that when failed to meet, leads to complicated circumstances to the person who has sought such assistance.