In the last week I have seen a few changes with my exchange accounts. Both Matchbook and Smarkets have granted me 0% commission for the next 3 months (courtesy of OddsMonkey) whilst Betfair have put me back to 5% after (yet another) “opt-in” month of 2% comes to an end. Combine all of this with Betdaq recently going 2% and its starting to look a little chaotic and cut-throat in the world of betting exchanges!
Whilst Betfair is still undoubtedly the market leader in this world it is safe to say the “challenger” exchanges are starting to make some noticeable gains. I myself have had 0% on Matchbook for a while now and have found mainstream football games have surprisingly good liquidity, more than enough for the average matched bettor to save a few quid in commission anyway!
So, all of this has got me thinking about what is next for Betfair? I feel the “cash race” does’t offer any real value anymore since 5% is fast becoming a rip-off rate and the 2% opt-in periods seem a little sporadic and last-minute at best. Factor in their recent merger with PaddyPower and sadly it looks like their long term aims are to become yet another bookie, how sad for the company which gave betting exchanges to the world!
Please understand I have been a big fan of Betfair for years but as a trader and matched bettor they are starting to offer less and less value to me and many others who are in the same boat. I would love to see them become an innovative and competitive exchange once again but I get the feeling they just aren’t bothered about this part of their business anymore. These days Betfair seem happy just to milk what’s left of the exchange whilst it dies a slow and painful death.
I think many would like to see Betfair become a 2% exchange in the near future and maybe even drop the premium charge to help keep the bigger customers intested. Maybe something inbetween the two is realistic but ultimately who knows what will come next?
Of course, despite the rumors no one really knows what Betfair will do next however, I think they need to do something if they want to stay ahead of the excellent, up and coming challenger exchanges!
So, Betfair, what’s next? It’s your move!