The concept of Price Per Head Bookmaking to an off shore service has become increasingly popular in the last several years. By using software written by online sports books, agents or local bookmakers have the ability to outsource the writing of their business to companies around the world. Therefore, the agent or bookmaker simply points their clients to a phone number and/or website and allows them to bet with a simple Pin/Password system. The agent or bookmaker then pulls reports at the end of the week, and pays or collects what the client won or lost. The only money that trades hands between the agent or bookmaker and the service provider is a simple Price Per Head service fee.
Obvious benefits of the Price Per Head relationship are (i) improved earning potential for the agent, (ii) decreased legal exposure for the agent, (iii) increased customer service for the agent's clients, and (iv) ability for the agent to do something other than answer wagering calls (they actually get time to enjoy the money they are earning).
The number of Price Per Head providers has grown exponentially over the last ten years with entrants to the marketplace most common after the passage of the UIGEA in the U.S.. With so many choices, the big question is: "How do I know which Price Per Head provider or sports book to choose?"
When evaluating an offshore operation, it is often difficult to sort through the facts, for this reason, you must rely on the following to make a sound choice:
1. Years In Business: Make sure you choose a Price Per Head operator that has been in business for at least 6 years. A proven track record is a must. Agents cannot afford to risk their clients or an entire sports season to a fly by night company or 'wanna be' operator. Avoid new operators or places that are affiliated with new post-up sportsbooks. Avoid anyone with an unreasonably low price (<$5/head/week) who may be attempting to gain entry into the market or low ball in a desperate move to stay afloat
Keys to look for: The concept of PPH originated around 1999. Since then there are companies that specifically operate PPH businesses only. However, there are some very reputable operators that do both PPH and post operations separately. Most of the larger PPH companies have been around for a decade or so.
2. Location: Check to make sure that the PPH provider is licensed and legally able to service clients world-wide.
Keys to look for: There are only two locations that we know of that allow the outsourcing of bookmaking. The two locations are Costa Rica and Panama. There are several very experienced operators in both of these jurisdictions. The UK and Dutch Antilles to NOT allow this activity in their licenses.
3. Reputation/Integrity: One of the best ways to make sure that your clients and your business will be safe with a provider is by checking their reputation. Use verifiable and known sources of information like the Off Shore Gaming Association, Covers, Sportsbook Review, etc.
Keys to look for: When outsourcing a business to someone, the client should expect them to treat it as their own. The person accepting the outsourcing better have a reputation as strong as or stronger than the agent. This is the only way anyone should trust business to them. One additional note, if the PPH Company also has a post-up division, check the reputation of the post-up side of the company. This will tell you volumes about the company. Rather, if the PPH company is tied to a loser post-up sportsbook or one that has a negative reputation, you know what to expect for your clients.
4. Service and Offerings: Reputable PPH companies are open 24-hours a day, 7-days a week, 365-days a year. They offer quarter lines, half time lines, game lines, money lines, propositions, multiple casinos, horse betting, and more. You are outsourcing to better service your clients – therefore service is one of the key deciding factors on who to go with.
Keys to look for: Simply put, the more accessible the service is and the more wagering options that exist, the more money the agent will make. Agents should consider the service mentioned above to be the minimum acceptable. Rather, if they do not have a casino – you should NOT work with them. If they do not have horses – you should NOT work with them. If they are not open 24-hours a day – you should NOT work with them, PERIOD!
5. Security: A PPH company must have safeguards and must keep your information and clients secure and anonymous If the company you are considering is publicly held, then your security is compromised (it CAN BE accessed via the government). If the company you are considering has integrity issues, you can assume your data will be passed on to the wrong people.
Keys to look for: Security is the ultimate issue. Some of the companies that provide these services have had the opportunity to be purchased or taken public. However, as far as we know, no one has decided not to do so because it would put clients/agents/bookmakers in a compromised situation. Partner agents and bookmakers use PPH services because their integrity and the security of their data is complete.