Chile is one of those countries with a long gambling history, and sports betting occupies a significant portion of that history. For many years, Chileans have been able to wager on sports through, in essence, a state lottery. In fact, the only betting on horse racing was the only form of betting allowed in the country prior to 1990.
Essentially, this was done as pari-mutuel betting on track. And while this served many betting enthusiasts in Chile, there was always an appetite for betting on other sports, such as football. As a result, some operators started taking bets on football illegally.
After the 90s
The Chilean sports betting market was in turmoil until 2008, when lottery operator, Polla Chilena, decided to seek permission from the Chilean authorities to offer fixed odds betting; that was in 2008. Partnering with GTech, a gambling tech firm, the operator was able to establish at least 2000 sports betting joints in Chile.
The operator was allowed to take bets on a wide range of sports, including football. This came as a sign of relief for Chileans who preferred betting on other sports other than horse racing. With so many options to choose from now available, betting would surge in popularity, prompting the Chilean government to regulate the industry.
According to the legislation enacted in 2005, all gambling landbased betting operators in Chile are subject to a 20% taxation to ensure they play by the rules. Those who don't play by the rules risk having their license withdrawn. And while this is one of the harshest taxation policies in South America, the operators have continued to reak in profits year-in, year out. Hence, there are signs sports betting may continue to grow.