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Regulatory returns guidance for gaming machine technical

This is to help you prepare some of the key data that you are required to report within the regulatory return for gaming machine technical operating licence.

If you misrepresent or fail to reveal information that you are asked to provide, unless you have a reasonable excuse, you will have committed an offence under section 342 of the Gambling Act 2005. Anyone who provides information of a false or misleading nature risks prosecution.

After receipt of your completed regulatory return, we may still need to contact you for any further information we consider necessary in order to process your regulatory return.

Any information or material that is sent to us and which we record may be subject to the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA). Our policy on release of information is available on request or on our website.

We will handle confidential information accordingly and will only disclose that information to people outside the Commission where it is necessary to do so in order to carry out our functions or where we are required by law to disclose the information. As a public authority we must comply with the requirements of FOIA and must consider requests for information made under the Act on a case-by-case basis. 

All information provided will be processed in accordance with the Data Protection Act 2018. However, it may be disclosed to government departments or agencies, local authorities and other bodies when it is necessary to do so in order to carry out our functions and where we are legally required to do so. 

Operational information

Workforce information

As part of the Licence conditions and codes of practice (LCCP) operators are required to provide information on the range of gambling activities provided by the licensee and the number of staff employed in connection with them. This means all staff employed by the licensed entity, and therefore employed in the gambling industry.

We recognise that there are operators with only part of their business in the gambling field. Where this is the case we understand that the staff numbers relating to the licensed aspect of the business may need to be estimated for some staff in centralised or support functions.

Staff employed

Employee numbers should be reported at a date as near to the end of the period as possible, for each category listed, on both annual and quarterly regulatory returns. It may be most convenient to calculate this at the date of the last pay run in the reporting period.

Total number of employees    

Record the total number of employees. This is the number of individuals employed at a given time, irrespective of the hours they work. Count each person as one regardless of whether they work full time or part time. 

An employee is anyone that your organisation directly pays from its payroll(s), in return for carrying out a full time or part time job or being on a training scheme. This includes workers who are employed in relation to the licensed activity who are: 

  • paid directly from this business’s payroll
  • temporarily absent but still being paid, for example on maternity leave.

 Do not include: 

  • employees not employed in relation to the licensed activity
  • former employees only receiving a pension
  • self-employed workers
  • working owners who are not paid via PAYE
  • staff who are not directly employed (for example, agency staff) 
  • volunteers.

If employees work across a group, you should record them on the regulatory return for the licensed activity that uses most of their time. 

Contributions

Details of any contributions provided to organisations promoting socially responsible gambling research, education and treatment since submitting the previous return.

Are contributions made?

Select the appropriate option (yes/no). 

Also select yes if you have made a contribution in an earlier regulatory return period that also covers this regulatory return period – eg if you are completing a quarterly return but have previously provided details of an annual contribution. 

Use the 'Details of contribution' section to record the fact you have provided details of your contribution on an earlier regulatory return. Do not record the value of your contribution or the beneficiary again. 

Contribution via trade body 

If you are a trade association/body member and your contribution was made through them please select ‘Contribution via Trade Body’. You should also record the name of the trade association/body. 

Value of contribution (£) 

Record the value of your contribution. If you have apportioned your contribution across a number of sectors you should record the amount relevant to the licensed activity covered by the regulatory return. That is, if your business completes more than one regulatory return, your RET contribution should be divided between the different sectors and recorded in the relevant returns. Do not record the company’s total contribution in full on each regulatory return.  

Indicate the time period to which the contribution relates 

Provide details of the time period to which this contribution relates. For example, you might make a three-year grant in one year, and therefore make no contribution for the following two years. This should be recorded on the regulatory return that covers the period in which the contribution was made. Subsequent regulatory returns should indicate that a contribution was made and that details have previously been submitted. You should use this section of the regulatory return to record those details. 

Details of contribution

Enter details relating to the contribution. 

Financial information

Distribution details 

Enter number of units sold and the gross value of those sales. Also enter the gross value of software sales which is not included in the first two columns. 

Cabinet details 

Record the number of gaming machines manufactured by category, the associated gross value of sales and separately any income from additional software sales.

The values recorded should reflect sales for the period related to the regulatory return. A gaming machine should be counted as one unit regardless of whether it is supplied with one or more game titles. The number of units refers to the numbers of gaming machines sold. The gross value of sales is for gaming machines sales only.

Value of software sales relates to software sold separately to the gaming machine units. The number of software sales should not be recorded in column 1 as we only require the gross value of sales.

A new gaming machine is defined as either: Machine with a new game title, regardless of whether it carries a new unique serial number or not and regardless of whether the cabinet or components are new or not. (Greened). Or: Existing game titles but manufactured with a new unique serial number, and using new or existing components but machine new to market. 

Profit share 

Enter the number of machines you have on profit share and your share of the profits for each of the premises types shown. 

Leased 

For manufacturers, distributors and suppliers, record the number of gaming machines supplied on a lease or rental agreement and your income before tax, by venue type. 

Legacy machines are those manufactured before September 2007. Scrapped machines are no longer serviceable and broken for parts or if a machine is ‘Greened’, note if a serial number is reused/retained there should be an adequate audit trail to reflect this.

Sales

For manufacturers, please record the number of second-hand machines sold by venue. For supplier/distributor, please record the number of new and second-hand machines sold direct to end users by venue. Number of machines sold should be the number that you sold over the period of this regulatory return. 

Gross income is the total gross income.

Supplied

For manufacturers, distributors and suppliers, record the number of gaming machines supplied on a lease or rental agreement and your income before tax, by venue type.  

Legacy machines are those manufactured before September 2007. Scrapped machines are no longer serviceable and broken for parts or if a machine is ‘Greened’, note if a serial number is reused/retained there should be an adequate audit trail to reflect this. 

Maintenance sales and kits 

Enter your income from machine maintenance and your income from the sale of kits.

Total revenue

Confirm details of your gross gambling yield (GGY) for the period relating to the regulatory return.

Enter the remote/non-remote split for this GGY.

Gross gambling yield is the amount retained by operators (in relation to the licensed activity) after the payment of winnings but before the deduction of the costs of the operation. For example, the total amount of stakes received, minus the amount paid out in winnings, equals GGY.

Certification statement 

The certification statement needs to be signed by one key PML (individuals holding specified management offices). For small-scale operators, the person with control of the business should sign the certification. We would expect the signatories to make reasonable enquiries of the Board and other key staff who play a significant role in ensuring compliance with the operator’s licence conditions and codes of practice. 

The extent of reasonable enquiries may differ between sectors and size of business but the

Commission suggests that these should include:

  • referring to the current trading position and any financial projections that may exist and assessing whether there is a significant likelihood of the business experiencing financial difficulties
  • reviewing the adequacy of resources and arrangements (policies, systems and controls) in place to ensure compliance with licence conditions and codes of practice
  • enquiring of the Board and other PMLs whether they are aware of any factors or pending changes that may threaten the business’s ability to meet the licence conditions and codes of practice.

In signing the statement, we envisage that PMLs of larger entities will be able to draw on a number of sources of assurance, including:

  • Existing trading position
  • Financial projections
  • Results of compliance/internal audit/assurance work
  • Complaints information
  • External auditor’s report
  • Customer feedback surveys
  • Independent reviews/consultants’ reports.

For smaller entities, owners or managers will be more aware of all aspects of the business and will be able to use this knowledge to give the necessary assurances.

We are not seeking to underwrite the financial viability of operators and understand that unforeseen events (financial or otherwise) may arise which cause financial or other difficulties. As indicated above, we expect operators to make reasonable enquiries and to use the information they have to make sound judgements.

If you have any questions or queries relating to the completion of the regulatory return, then please contact us