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Isle of Man GSC – The experienced and stable regulator

isle of manThe Isle of Man is located on the Irish sea and is home to one of the oldest and most respected gaming authorities in the world, the Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission (GSC). Having being established in 1962, they regulate the services of a great number of top rated bookmakers and casinos, both land based and online. Although the Isle of Man is not considered a United Kingdom territory, they work in close legal collaboration with the UK government and the United Kingdom Gambling Commission (UKGC), in order to assist the licensed betting firms and safeguard the interests of their players.

Roles and responsibilites

The GSC is known as a leading regulator against money laundering and fraudulent betting companies, having earned the reputation of a strict, but fair authority. They specifically state this on their website and emphasize on three principles:

  • to keep the gambling industry free of crime.

  • to protect minors and vulnerable social groups.

  • to make sure that the services offered by licence holders are fair and that players receive their true winnings.

Additionally, they offer legal information to any interested betting companies or bettors. They also co-operate with the Treasury and the Department of Economic Development of the Isle of Man, in order to better prevent any illegal activities concerning online betting.

Finally, given that gambling amounts to 8% of the Isle of Man's GDP, the GSC is tasked with providing an investment friendly environment for any interested bookmakers or casinos. This means that they have to thoroughly brief every company, that applies for a license, with the existing gambling law and tax obligations.

Types of licenses and licensing procedure

The GSC allows every applicant to hold an extensive license that covers a great number of gambling services. These include sports betting, games of chance, casino games and other non gaming activities, such as marketing and software development.

Specifically, a bookie with an IOM license will receive the following:

  1. An online Gaming License for the Company

  2. A Corporate Bank for Online Gaming business with a Top Tier Bank

  3. Online Gambling Merchant Accounts on Skrill

  4. Online Gambling Merchant Accounts of both Visa & MasterCard

  5. 10 Hours of Personalized Business Advice

The procedure is pretty straightforward and usually takes less than three months to be completed. Every applicant must agree to follow the Gambling Law and present the following information to the Commission, in order to receive their license.

  • Notarized Copies of passport

  • Certificate of no criminal record of the company's owners, not older than 3 months;

  • Bank references of the owners, not older than 3 months

  • Utility bills copies not older than 3 months

  • Detailed description of the offered games

  • Detailed business plan

  • Confirmation of the Random Number Generator (RNG) application and its fairness (certified by a 3rd party)

  • Details about the software utilized and TST (or similar) report if available,

  • Geographic/target market

  • Declaration of owners stating that they have blocked access to the services for minors and offer information on problems caused be gambling on the website

  • The website's servers need to be located in the Isle of Man.

The fees associated with maintaining a GSC license are among the lowest between the various gambling jurisdictions. What is really appealing though, is the fact that every betting company is required to pay insignificant taxes to the IOM's government.


  • £5,000 administration fee with the initial application (Network Services, Full or Sub-licence)

  • £50,000 per year thereafter (& £5,000 for every foreign operator)

  • £35,000 per year and afterwards, for a Full licence

  • £5,000 per year thereafter, for a Sub-licence


  • For gross gaming yield, not exceeding £20 million per year = 1.5%

  • For gross gaming yield, more than £20 million, but not exceeding £40 million per year = 0.5%

  • For gross gaming yield, exceeding £40 million per annum = 0.1%

  • For gross gaming yield from Pool Betting = 15%

    isle of man1

Making a complaint

Every player matters to the GSC as recent history has shown. A team of legal experts is almost always available on the customer support service, to answer any questions any bettor might have and try to settle any disputes between players and betting firms. In the event of a complaint, a bettor can enter this link and fill in the required information. There, he must state his name, residence, the bookmaker he wishes to report and the nature of his complaint.

In order to avoid any grievances, the GSC specifically states that the decision concerning the complaint, depends on whether its grounds are valid or not, meaning that the bettor must present as much evidence as he is able to. Thankfully, the Isle of Man is one of the most fair jurisdictions and has shown it values each and every customer. In 2004 many claims had arisen about slow pays from a certain bookmaker then licensed in the Isle of Man. After a thorough investigation from the GSC, forced them to reimburse their customers, gave them an “F” SBR (sportsbook rating) and labeled them as a scam bookie.


The Isle of Man gambling jurisdiction is one of the world’s leading betting jurisdictions, offering a multitude of advantages to each license holder and its players. First of all, they are strict but just, concerning the licensing procedure and are known to award their licenses in a quick fashion. They also offer a cheap license package at extremely low tax rates, while at the same time boasting a wealth of experience in the gaming business, having been around for 50 years.

What has truly made the Isle of Man stand out lately however, is the fact that they are one of the few gambling jurisdictions who allow bitcoins as a way of payment. The virtual currency is on the rise on everyday transactions and although it still retains a slightly shady reputation, many bookmakers are willing to accept such deposits.


There are really many disadvantages concerning the GSC, as they are a widely respected authority, who host some of the top sports betting companies and casinos. However, the Bet2Be incident, has shown that it is hard to check each bookmaker and almost impossible to force them to reimburse their customers. Although this was not entirely the GSC’s fault, it dealt a heavy blow to the Commission’s image in the betting world.

Contact info

Gambling Supervision Commission

Ground Floor

St George's Court

Myrtle Street


Isle of Man


Telephone: +44 1624 694331


Email: Send Email at

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