Singapore’s state-run lottery and sports betting monopoly is adding horseracing to its offering, taking over from the local race betting monopoly.
On Monday, the Singapore Turf Club announced that Singapore Pools would be taking over its horse betting operations with effect from January 7, 2019. The Tote Board, which operates both betting portals, said the move was intended to “achieve synergies and improve cost efficiencies.”
Singapore Pools will assume control of the betting windows at the Singapore Racecourse, as well as its off track betting outlets and the iTote remote wagering operation. The iTote app will remain separate from Singapore Pools’ mobile app and the Tote Board assured customers that there will be no changes to customers’ ability to access all existing race betting channels.
Singapore Pools CEO Seah Chin Siong said the consolidation of betting activities would help maintain “the highest level of rigor and accountability in social safeguards and responsible gaming measures.”
Following the offloading of its betting operations, the Turf Club will focus on “its core competency in managing and providing high quality horseracing.”
Singapore Pools and the Turf Club are the only state-approved gambling options available to local punters, apart from the city-state’s two integrated resort casinos Marina Bay Sands and Resort World Sentosa, each of which charges local residents S$100 for a 24-hour pass that allows access to either property’s gaming floor.
Singapore Pools and the Turf Club launched their respective online betting operations in 2016 and the government announced this year that the improved access to wagering hadn’t led to a “surge” in betting volume for either group. Surveys showed that over 95% of both operation’s online bettors had made a wager in person or over the phone with the same monopoly in the previous 12 months.