Seeing its first light of day as far back as 1967, when the two brothers Fred and Peter Done opened the very first betting shop in Ordsall, Salford, Betfred is now one of the most prominent titles in the realm of sports betting. Fred Done started out in the bookmaking business when he was still a kid. Back then he was “a runner” for his dad, a bookmaker, collecting football bets from factories and pubs.
The shop at Salford was heavily financed by the bet on England winning the world cup. Odds went in favor of the brothers, not so long afterwards ambitions kept escalating and the brothers decided on a second betting shop which was opened up in 1969. This was just the beginning for Betfred. At his shop, Done always referred to his clients as “Sir” and got them complementary drinks, he treated his business rather formally.
The growth meant no looking back! The brothers were in it for the long haul. Over time, Betfred has experienced exponential growth. Done, by 1997, had 100 shops. Eight years down the line that number had multiplied to 500 and by the time the government Done as the winner of the Tote auction, in his estate Done had over 840 betting shops.
Primarily, Done was concerned with the experience he accorded his clients, which served him great, doubling the number of shops was no mean feat.
One thing that Betfred was as well famous for is paying off their customers before the close and announcements of the game at play. This would prove to cost them a lump sum of cash down the line. In 1998, Done paid all of his customers who had bet on Manchester United winning the Premier League(Fred was, and still is a great fan of the club) only to have Arsenal go one point ahead of the Red Devils.
Today BETFRED has over 1300 shops in the UK and over 10,000 employees. Apart from Betfred’s vast popularity, moving online was as well a step in their advantage, stating the obvious, since it’s geometrically expanded their clientele.
Back in 2011, Betfred bought the Tote for £265 million, becoming the very first and only organisation licensed to allow tote betting on horses in the UK. Betfred also acquired the Tote’s 517 shops and Totesport.com and rebranded it as Totepool.com.
Although its betting shops nationally have well expanded, Betfred’s headquarters remains close to Salford in Warrington — handily close to the Tote’s base in Wigan. And to think 10 years earlier, the big chains were looking at the Betfred business as potential takeover material, guess we can say the “odds” were not in their favor!
Betfred elicited its innovative nature of business, proving its relevance in the current times as shown by the recent introduction of the highly popular “goals galore” coupon. This is where stakers need to select five games where they think all the teams will score. As much as £1m is bet on that coupon every week, forcing his competitors to copy the idea, they have to style up after all.
Talking numbers, Betfred’s turnover in 2004 was more than £3.5 billion, having risen from £550 million in 2003. Venturing into horse racing, Betfred sponsors up to 700 events annually. Other than that, Betfred is one recognised for its sound advice to its clientele, this makes the experience they offer personal, definitely has customers coming back.
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