The Philippines: e-sabong operators could see PHP3.5bn in revenue

PAGCOR began licensing e-sabong operators this year.
PAGCOR began licensing e-sabong operators this year.

PAGCOR chairman Andrea Domingo has said licensed e-sabong revenue could exceed that of offshore gaming operators.

The Philippines.- The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp (PAGCOR) chairman Andrea Domingo has predicted that licensed e-sabong operators in the Philippines could generate revenue of between PHP3bn to PHP3.5bn this year.

In May, PAGCOR announced that two licensed e-sabong (online cockfighting) operators had started to operate. In June, it approved two more applications.

Domingo said the maximum number of e-sabong licences would be 12. She said there were currently 12 applications pending, but that only 8 new entrants will be allowed to enter the market.

Online betting on cockfights has rocketed in the Philippines since cockpits were closed to spectators at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic. The Philippines’ cockfighting industry is believed to be worth just over US$1bn per year.

The Philippines government is seeking to eradicate illegal gambling and make up for lost revenue from its land-based casinos and online gaming companies, which have been hit hard by countermeasures to contain the Covid-19 pandemic.

PAGCOR gaming revenue down 20% in the first half of the year 2021

The regulator revealed that gaming income for the first half fell by 20 per cent year-on-year to PHP14.7bn (US$293.1m). For the first six months, PAGCOR made a profit of PHP79m.

PAGCOR previously reported that gaming revenue fell by 51.4 per cent year-on-year to PHP8.36bn (US$172.8m) in the first quarter of 2021, compared to nearly PHP17.22bn (US$339.8m) in the first quarter of 2020.

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