Wondering how to start a gaming and lottery business? We take you step-by-step from start to success.
Hurdles to Gaming & Lottery Business Startups
More than other types of businesses, gaming and lottery businesses face significant startup hurdles. As you probably know, many states and municipalities completely restrict gambling operations, so the first order of business is to research the laws in your area and obtain the licenses that are required to operate a gaming & lottery business.
After you've cleared the legal hurdles, you'll need to create a business plan that includes a location for your business. Although it is tempting to build or buy a gaming facility, we advise gaming & lottery startups to orient their business planning toward a commercial lease scenario. Why? Because until your business gets off the ground, it's impossible to accurately predict demand and growth opportunities.
Startup Capital Issues for Gaming & Lottery Operations
New gaming & lottery operations can't be launched on a shoestring. There are several startup capital requirements that must be addressed -- some of which may be mandated by regulatory guidelines.
- Gaming Equipment. If your startup will feature gaming machines, you will obviously need to buy or lease gaming equipment. Most of today's leading gaming centers feature technologically advanced slot machines and gaming consoles -- the priciest options on the market.
- Marketing Budget. A carefully thought out marketing strategy is critical for gaming center startups. But unless it is adequately funded, your marketing strategy will have no value to your business. As a rule of thumb, dedicate at least 10% of your startup budget to marketing.
- Payout Reserves. It's a good idea for any startup business to have a certain amount of reserve capital on hand. But gaming & lottery startups are required to maintain reserves in an amount that is sufficient to cover jackpots and prize payouts.
Characteristics of a Good Gaming & Lottery Company Business Plan
Every business plan is unique. However, the most effective business plans do address specific sound business plan elements:
- Mission Statement – A concise declaration of values, strategy and identity.
- Goals & Objectives – A list of mile markers on your gaming and lottery business's road to success.
- Financial, Marketing & Action Plans – Specific plans that describe your business environment, demographic targets and quantitative estimates.
Evaluate the Competition
Prior to opening a gaming and lottery business in your area, it's a smart move to see how many competitors you have. Use the link below to find competitors near you. Just enter your city, state and zip code to get a list of gaming and lottery businesses in your community.
Is the local market large enough to support another gaming and lottery business? If not, you had better be sure that you are doing things much better than the competition.
Talk to People Who Are Already in the Business
If you are interested in starting a gaming and lottery business, it's essential that you learn as much as you can from somebody who is already in the business. If you think your local competitors will give you advice, you're being overoptimistic. It'd be crazy for them to teach you the business.
However, a fellow entrepreneur who has started a gaming and lottery business in a location that is not competitive to you may be willing to share their entrepreneurial wisdom with you, once they realize that you are not going to directly compete with them in their community. Indeed, many experienced entrepreneurs enjoy offering advice to startup entrepreneurs. Our estimate is that you may have to contact many business owners to find one who is willing to share his wisdom with you.
Where can an aspiring entrepreneur like you find a gaming and lottery business entrepreneur outside of your area who is willing to talk?
No problem! Just use the link below and try a random city/state or zipcode. Then start dialing for advice until you are successful.
Three Arguments for Buying a Gaming & Lottery Business
It's almost always preferable to buy a gaming and lottery business than to pursue a gaming and lottery business startup.
You'll want to conduct a comprehensive due diligence process, but here are three arguments why you should think about buying instead of a startup.
- Initial Revenue. With a business purchase, you'll have the ability to buy a company that is already operating in the black.
- Operational Efficiency. Existing businesses are established operations, with the necessary processes, people and other resources already in place.
- Capital Acquisition. In general, it's easier to finance an existing business than it is to fund a startup. While a startup only exists on paper (initially), established businesses have the benefit of historical earnings statements and tangible assets.
The chances of growing your business greatly improve when you franchise and benefit from the prior work of others and their lessons learned.
If you are thinking about opening a gaming and lottery business, you may want to determine whether purchasing a franchise might help you avoid common entrepreneurial mistakes.
The link below gives you access to our franchise directory so you can see if there's a franchise opportunity for you. You might even find something that points you in a completely different direction.
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If you already are in business and came here to learn about growing an existing gaming and lottery business, these resources will come in handy:
If you sell to gaming and lottery businesses, you're in the wrong place. These resources are more appropriate for you:
If you are interested in starting a different kind of business, please browse our directory of guides below.