Betfred is one of the oldest UK based bookmakers, dating back to its insertion in the gambling industry in 1967. Since then the company has come on leaps and bounds and whilst brick and mortar betting shops were very much their priority, the 21st century has seen them grow and develop into becoming one of the best online bookmakers, not only in the UK, but the world.
One of the outstanding reasons to their continued success is their willingness to provide innovation to what can become a pretty stagnate industry. They were the first company to pay out early on a betting market – Manchester United to win the league in 1998, only for them to be piped by Arsenal – and the introduction of new betting markets such as Goals Galore, Double Delight and Hat Trick Heaven.
Sign Up Offers
Bet £10 Get £40 in Bonuses
Betfred are offering a new special welcome packed packed with £40 of bonuses when you sign up, deposit and bet £10 (that's 400% for the mathematically challenged among you). To get it you need to register using this promotional page, make a deposit and then place a £10 bet at odds of evens or more. You'll then receive the following:
- £30 sports free bets
- £10 in free spins (50 spins at 20p)
This applies to all UK and Irish meetings each day plus selected international races. Take a price, if the start price is bigger you'll get the start price.
Ante post bets, Luck 15/31/63s, tote bets, bets placed with free bets, Super Extra Place bets and special or boosted markets are excluded. In the event of a Rule 4, bigger price will be applied after deduction. 18+, T&Cs apply.#ad
A number of races each day will benefit from an extra place for each way bets. This could mean 3, 4 or 5 places paid.
All Correct Bonuses
Place a full cover bet (including Lucky 15/31/63, Yankee, Canadian or Heinz) and you can get a bonus on your winnings if you every selection wins. The bonus is worth between 10% and 25% of your profit, based on the number of bets included in the wager. As an added sweetner, if you placed your winning bet solely on the Super Bonus Races listed on the Betfred website, you can get an even bigger bonus of up to 100%.
Lucky 15/31/63 Boosts
A classic offer for fan's of the Lucky bets, which takes the opposite approach to the all correct promotion above. This time you'll get paid out at enhanced odds if only one of your horses win in a Lucky 15, 31 or 63. You'll get 3, 4 or 5 times the normal odds based on which bet you placed.
This will apply to horse racing and greyhound bets only. Other sports and virtual races are not included. All Selection must run for bonuses to apply. Bets placed with free bets are excluded. Bonus are applied to winnings and not the bet stake. 18+, T&Cs apply.#ad
Another Betfred invention that's since been copied by a few other bookies. Here your winning first goalscorer bet will get paid out at double odds if the player scores again during regular time. As for the hat trick part, well if your player scores three goals in the match, you'll get treble the odds.
Goals Galore: The Original BTTS Market
One thing that Betfred do very well is innovate. And as we mentioned earlier, they’re always coming out with new offers – often inventing new concepts and taking a new approach to old ideas. Or to put it another way, they’re not afraid to try something different.
But it’s not just offers they experiment with, Betfred have been known to invent entirely new markets and their Goals Galore coupon was the father of the now incredibly popular both teams to score market (BTTS for short). Whilst BTTS is now offered by pretty much every bookie in the UK (including Betfred), Betfred still offer their original Goals Galore Coupon, which is effectively a fixed odds BTTS acca.
Here’s how it works: the Goals Galore coupon is made up of a number of upcoming matches. Your job is to select the ones in which you think both teams will score at least one goal. The payouts are fixed based on the number of selections you include:
- 3 correct – 3/1
- 4 correct – 11/2
- 5 correct – 10/1
- 6 correct – 16/1
- 7 correct – 28/1
- 8 correct – 45/1
- 9 correct – 70/1
- 10 correct – 120/1
- 11 correct – 200/1
- 12 correct – 300/1
- 13 correct – 500/1
- 14 correct – 800/1
- 15 correct – 1350/1
There is also a second coupon called ‘Goals Galore Bonus’ which offers better odds on a smaller number of matches. This pays out as follows:
- 3 correct – 9/2
- 4 correct – 9/1
- 5 correct – 16/1
You could, of course, place the same accumulator using the standard BTTS markets – and even include ‘both teams not to score’ bets in it, something that the Goals Galore coupon doesn’t currently allow. But you do sometimes get better odds with the coupon versus a straight accumulator, depending on the matches.
Betfred purchased The Tote in 2011, and worked hard to revive the brand before selling it on in 2019 . As you would expect, Tote products are readily available and well presented on this site.
If your unfamiliar with how it all works, The Tote is basically pool betting on horse racing where you are paid out a share of the pool if you win. The amount that you receive depends on how much was bet into the pool and how many winners there were of a particular outcome.
All the old favourites are available including Placepots, Jackpots, Scoop 6, Quadpots, Swingers and Trifectas. You can also bet with The Tote on horses to win and place as well as the Exacta which is the Tote version of a forecast.
Although these bets have been around for decades, they are presented here in a bright, bold and modern way via the Totepool Live Info page. This gives you up-to-date information on pool sizes, dividends and what money is on each selection.
You can bet with the Tote in lots of places but it’s really well done here. There are arguments for and against Tote betting but it’s a different way to do it so well worth checking out. Bets like the Jackpot and Scoop 6 still give you the chance to pick up huge wins from placing small bets.
We’ve already briefly mentioned Goals Galore and Double Delight but it’s exactly these sorts of innovative markets that make Betfred so popular with the punters. The simplicity of them works really well and in the modern day climate are quickly becoming the new accumulator bet for football punters.
Over the last few years Betfred have worked very hard on their mobile betting app as well. When we first looked at it back in 2009 the app was a pixelated excuse for an app, especially with the ones that we were used to in the marketplace. Now however, the app is a slick, shiny, well functioned betting application with pretty much every amenity on there that would find on the site itself. It’s obvious that they have poured a lot of money and man power into producing the next generation betting platform, which is mobile betting.
Betting in-play with Betfred is simple and clear to do with a wide range of sports and markets to choose from. It’s easy to filter by your chosen sport with the current in-play matches shown at the top of the screen and that day’s schedule continuing underneath. Cash out in available where the symbol is visible. There’s a number of football, tennis and basketball games, amongst some others, which are streamed live on the site each day. Again, these are highlighted, with a watch live tab in the in-play section where available. There’s also radio commentary available on horse racing, football, cricket and greyhounds.
In addition to these sports all UK and Irish horse racing is streamed live if you place a £1 bet or more, fairly reasonable we’d say and crucial for racing punters who want to see where their money is won and lost.
Deposit methods include all major Debit Cards, Neteller, PayPal, Skrill and PaySafeCard. You can also deposit and withdraw through any of Betfred’s high street shops.
- Minimum Deposit – £5 for most deposit methods, £10 for deposits via a Betfred shop.
- Minimum Withdrawal – Most methods have a £5 minimum withdrawal.
- Withdrawal Time – Up to 48 hour processing time.
- Fees – All debit card deposits are free. One free Neteller or Skrill, after which there may be a small fee added at Betfred’s discretion. For Neteller withdrawals there is a 2% fee unless the deposit was bet at least once.
- Bonus Exclusions – Yes, some ewallets excluded from bonuses (including Neteller, Skrill and PaySafeCard). Use a debit card or PayPal instead.
- Transaction Name – Betfred or Petfre.
Contact & Licence
- Live Chat – Via website
- Email – [email protected]
- Telephone – 0800 028 7747 / 01925 907500
- Post – c/o The Spectrum, 56-58 Benson Road, Birchwood, WA3 7PQ
- Licence Details – UK Gambling Commission 39544
- Company Name – Petfre (Gibraltar) Limited trading as Betfred
- Company Number – 99314 (Gibraltar)
- Company Address – 5/2 Waterport Place, 2 Europort Avenue, Gibraltar, GX11 1AA
If you’re a Manchester United fan, there’s a good chance that you’ll know all about Betfred. The bookmaker was once criticised by Alex Ferguson for paying out early on his club winning the title, only for Arsenal to pip them to it. That is because Fred Done, the founder of Betfred, is from Manchester and a fan of the club, meaning that he always favoured the Red Devils and paid out early on them winning a title more than once. Their first shop was established in Salford in 1967, with the company growing to be one of the biggest in the UK.
One of the most interesting stories about Betfred is the fact that Done Bookmakers, the company before it was renamed, was set up largely using capital that Fred Done had won by placing a sizeable bet on England winning the World Cup in 1966. In the years that followed, the company used a combination of organic growth and the purchase of other betting firms in order to grow its market position. In 2004, the bookmakers expanded to include online betting and changed its name to Betfred, which has remained the name of the business ever since.
The Formation Of Done Bookmakers
Fred Done and his brother Peter wanted to open a betting shop in the 1960s. The problem is, they didn’t have enough money to do so, meaning that a decision was taken to pool together some money and place a substantial wager on England winning the World Cup that they were hosting in 1966. We all know what happened next, up to and including the moment that some people were on the pitch, thinking that it was all over. By the time it was, the brothers had enough money to open their first shop in the Ordsall area of Salford.
The key objective that the pair wanted to do was to get away from what was known as the ‘spit and sawdust’ approach that most bookmakers took at the time. Instead, Fred Done moved to put carpet down and referred to his punters as ‘sir’, giving anyone in the shop to place a bet free hot drinks whilst they were there. Within a couple of years, the company’s success allowed for the opening of another shop. Having worked for his bookmaker father, Done learned of the punters that he should ‘skin ‘em and stamp on ‘em’.
Innovation As Key To Development
One of the reasons why Fred Done was able to make Betfred such a success is the fact that he constantly looked to innovate the company’s offerings. If you believe the words on Betfred’s corporate website, Done invented the Lucky 15, was the first person to offer daily early price races and also the first one to offer the Best Price Guarantee. In fact, the site makes numerous claims about firsts that Betfred offered punters, the majority of which are all but impossible to substantiate. Even so, Betfred have definitely been a site that has looked to appeal to punters on a regular basis.
Perhaps nowhere is that more evident than in Done’s decision to payout early on Manchester United winning the Premier League title back in 1998. It was March of that year and United were up against Arsenal in the battle for supremacy in the English top-flight, with two months’ worth of football still to play. The Red Devils were runaway leaders at the time, even though they still had to play Arsenal and the Gunners had some games in hand. They lost to the London side and drew with Liverpool and Newcastle United, which was enough to see Arsene Wenger’s team win the league by a point.
Done As The Ultimate Gambler
The decision to payout early on his beloved Manchester United and then pay again on bets placed on Arsenal reportedly cost Betfred around £500,000. It wasn’t the last time that Done would end up paying the price of loving the Red Devils, reportedly losing £1 million in a bet with fellow bookmaker Victor Chandler that United would finish above Chelsea, only for the London club to end the season 18 points clear. In spite of promising Ferguson that he wouldn’t do it again, Done also paid out early on a United title in 2011-2012.
As with the early payout against Arsenal, this one also back-fired in spectacular fashion. The big difference was that it was their neighbours Manchester City that pipped them to the Premier League in May of 2012, thanks to a now-famous goal from Sergio Aguero in stoppage time of the final game of the season, meaning that City’s superior goal difference handed them the trophy. Placing silly bets on the club that you love based on nothing more than a mis-placed confidence is, perhaps, a sign that Done was the ultimate gambler.
The Growth Of Betfred
Whilst the decisions to payout early on Manchester United might well have cost Done a significant sum of money, it also gained Betfred a wealth of free publicity. In 1997, a year before his first misplaced payout, Done had given the go-ahead to purchase a chain of shops under the Robert Walker brand. That took the total number of premises owned by what was still known as Done Bookmakers at the time to 100. Within three years, that total had doubled and by 2002 the company had moved into the lucrative London market.
The re-branding of the business to Betfred occurred in 2004, which was also when the company went online and offered bingo, online games, poker, virtual sports and pool betting in addition to the fixed-odds nature of the betting business. As a sign of how quickly the firm had started to move, Betfred opened its 500th shop in 2005. The company’s decision to purchase shops from Ladbrokes and Coral after their merger in 2016 took the total number of premises for the brand to 1,650.
One of the more controversial decisions involving Betfred occurred in June 2011, which was when it was confirmed that the company had won the bid to take over the running of the Tote from the government. The deal was worth £265 million, but many in the world of racing were unhappy at the fact that Fred Done would effectively be running one of horse racing’s most prized possessions. This was in spite of the fact that the company promised to invest £155 million into the sport over the following seven years, as well as the establishing the Tote Racing Development Board.
The deal that Betfred established with the government allowed them exclusive control of the on-course betting system, which remained the case until 2018. In 2019, Betfred sold the Tote to a consortium known as the UK Tote Group.
Perhaps the most important areas in improving Betfred’s brand recognition have come from both a clever advertising strategy and numerous sponsorship deals. For a time, Fred Done himself appeared in the adverts, ensuring that people were able to put a face to the name. The company also became one of the biggest sponsors of horse racing in the United Kingdom, getting their name attached to races at the likes of Newmarket, York and Haydock Park, as well as the Cheltenham Gold Cup.
Over the years, Betfred have sponsored Super League rugby, the World Snooker Championships and the Scottish League Cup. The company was also the official sponsor of the PDC’s World Matchplay event. All of these moves have helped ensure that Betfred’s name is well-known to punters around the UK, as well as in other countries such as Spain and the United State of America. This has allowed Betfred to avoid having to merge with another big betting sites in order to stay relevant, instead remaining an independent bookmaker.