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How UK’s oldest bookies thrived in the digital era

William hill bookmakers

Many of the UK’s oldest and iconic bookies are still around today. This is surprising when you consider how fast the industry has moved from the typical betting shop to offering an immersive online experience.

You can see this for yourself by visiting Many of the most popular and top-rated betting sites belong to the UK’s oldest bookies. They have not only survived in the new digital era, but they have found a way to dominate. The profits have continued to roll in, and they have expanded their businesses overseas with the help of technology.  In this article, we will look at how these iconic UK bookies were able to adapt and evolve for the digital era.

Bricks and Mortar Shops

By far, the most popular way to gamble during the 1960s and 1970s was through brick and mortar gambling shops. These were legalized, which led to them becoming commonplace on the high street. These were widespread across the UK. Examples of popular brick and mortar shops include Victor Chandler which is now known as BetVictor. However, some shops were around decades earlier. William Hill was established in 1934. They managed to obtain 500,000 loyal punters before they even opened a shop. Ladbrokes was around even earlier as they were established in 1896.

The Expansion of Betting Shops

The late 1970s were a time before the digital era. But, they were a crucial time for many bookies. Betting shops began to expand, and the major players had begun to outsize their operations. It was during this time period that we saw the emergence of the dominant bookies in the country. The big players started to expand and made some astute acquisitions. This would give them the headstart needed to continue dominating in the decades to come.

The Beginning of the Digital Era

Many would point to 1999 as a pivotal year in the digital era. However, not all bookmakers saw the digital age coming. Many were not impressed and saw the future of betting in shops rather than online. However, BetVictor was one of the firms which recognized the potential of technology to change the nature of betting. They were quick to set up a website, and this allowed them to benefit from the digital era. Similarly, other old bookmakers such as Ladbrokes and William Hill eventually saw the benefits of the digital age. They made sure to combine their shop businesses with their online websites.

Present Day and Future

The oldest UK bookmakers continue to innovate and improve their operations. They are aware that this is the only way to stay ahead in a highly competitive industry. Additionally, many used their capital to acquire new betting firms. Many also moved into new gambling industries such as online casinos. In the present era, they have been competing with Bet365 who has become an online giant. However, they have remained competitive through focusing on customer service, and ensuring that their online lineup was innovative. These bookmakers still have a good presence on the high street, but they made sure to take full advantage of new technology. In the future, they must continue to adapt and evolve if they want to remain at the top of this ever-changing industry.

Closing Thoughts

You will now understand how the UK’s oldest bookies moved on with the times and thrived instead of faltering. They now remain leaders of the gambling industry even in the digital era. This is a huge credit to their success in evolving their strategies, and being quick to move with gambling trends.

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