Coral are one of the biggest bookmakers in the industry and have been in operation since 1926. The company is owned by private equity firms Candover Investments, Cinven and Permira. They are primarily based out of Nottingham, London and Woking, but in 2011 they shifted part of their business abroad to Gibraltar where they now run the majority of their remote gaming division.
One of the most influential years in the company’s history came about in 2005 when it merged with Coral Eurobet for a reported £2.18 Billion. The brand is officially known as the Gala Coral Group, but are often still referred to as simply, Coral. What’s been impressive to see from Coral is that they have continued to increase expansion with the acquisition of several smaller brands and also a huge merger with Ladbrokes in 2015. This then lead to the remaining of Ladbrokes to Ladbrokes Coral, but again, the company is still widely known as simply, Ladbrokes.
Over the years Coral have been known to runs several fairly ‘out of the box’ marketing campaigns, none more so than the ‘Run 4 It’ campaign where employees dressed up as robbers to literally go and steal punters from other bookmakers. Throughout this campaign Coral reported that they managed to acquire no less than 2,447 customers from 900 bookmakers, with an impressive conversion rate of almost 7%.
High Street Betting Shops
Coral are one of the most popular brands on the high street at the minute. They currently have over 1,800 shops still in operation, making them one of the largest in terms of high street status. Coral are famed for still perusing bookmakers up and down the country and mainly operate their premises within the UK, with a few dotted around Europe.
Whilst other bookmakers have slowly but surely been reducing the number of high street shops in an attempt to concentrate more within the online industry, Coral has seen this a massive opportunity to pick up a plethora of acquisitions over the years. Some of the more notable ones include Bartletts and Heathorns in 1984 PTS in 1985 and Leisure Bookmakers in 1989.
The companies future plans look set to continue their growth, although over the last couple of years the rate in which they have opened new stores has reduced, compared with the same time 10 years ago. In an attempt to keep improving the Coral brand within their stores they have included Coral Connect, which allows punters to bet using a Coral card that is linked up to their online store, using the one account for all transactions.
Coral are one of the UK high street giants, established in 1928 by Joe Coral. They operate over 1700 bricks and mortar betting shops but increasingly their business is operated online. They are licensed and regulated, like many of their rivals, in Gibraltar.
Part of the Gala Coral Group that also operates physical casinos and bingo halls in the UK they a huge, reputable company with masses of industry experience. Via their website they offer online sports betting, poker, bingo, games, lotto and casino products, with the sports side of the business being especially strong on football and horse racing.
Odds & Markets
Coral are one of the biggest bookmakers in the industry and with that you will always be able to get a very competitive price when you bet with them. What they are probably best known for is their football betting, which is a credit in itself to the bookmaker due to how competitive these markets generally are. We tested a number of random bets from coral to find that they were consistently in the top 10 with their pricing and never really falling within a couple of points or so behind best price.
The market range, as you would expect from Coral, is superb. They offer up a ton of sports to bet on although you will find that they are heavily weighted towards that of both football and horse racing. The horse racing section is really where the bookmaker stands out for us and you will be able to bet on races from around the world. Outside of the ‘big 2’ there are plenty of other sports which are well covered, particularly tennis, American football, basketball and greyhounds.
What you will find from Coral is that there are no real surprises with the bookmaker and if you used them for all of your betting, you’re going to be getting a great range of sports at a more than competitive price.
Coral’s mobile site is very good with Apple and Android versions available which possess excellent usability standards, and a Blackberry version is reportedly on the way soon. Various casino games and slots are also available – ideal for when you’ve got a little time to kill.
The overall feel of the site is pretty good, although the relatively recent introduction of a lot more green to the site isn’t always easy on the eye. They offer a good results and stats service, as well as Coral Radio – superb quality live streaming on horse races – and a reasonable in-play console. Throw in 24/7 customer service (though not currently via live chat) that is friendly and efficient and Coral score pretty highly in all areas possible.
IN PLAY BETTING
The in-play betting section at Coral is substantial to say the least. The main culprits in this section are both football and tennis, but unlike many bookmakers they also offer up loads of other sports as well, although market coverage does suffer somewhat the more niche you get with each sport.
The live streaming section at Coral is fairly new, but already you will be able to access over 2,000 live streams each week. To gain access you will simply need to have a funded Coral account, but if you want to watch the horse racing channels then you will have needed to place at least a £1 bet on that specific race to access it.
The cash out feature at Coral is really intuitive operation. It allows you to cash out your bets at any point, just like the usual function would, but what’s great about Coral is that it allows you to cash out your bets placed in store as well. All you need to do is enter the cash out number from your bet slip into the cash out section on site, before that bet automatically appears and you can cash out as you wish.
Each week Coral run one of the more lucrative football jackpots in the industry. What’s on offer is a £100,000 prize pool and all you need to predict the outcome of 15 matches from the jackpot slip. All you need to do is choose from home win, away win or draw and select your stake ranging from 25p to £20 per line. Getting all 15 results will get you the £100,000 jackpot, whilst 14 correct ill get your 1st consolation dividend and 13 the 2nd consolation dividend.
Coral run the Bet Radar statistics section on site meaning you can get stats and information on dozens of sports and hundreds of matches. The stats will range in depth for each sport, with the like of football being the most in depth. Here you’ll be able to gather information such as head to head, past results, current form, top goalscores and team stats.
Coral are widely regarded as one of the biggest gambling companies in the world. It’s probably fair to say that they are best known for their work within the sports betting side, but their online casino over the last few years has seen them become an all-round player and a real force within all sectors.
The company have been about since 1926 and as a result make them one of the oldest in the industry. It was the merger with the Gala Group that really allowed Coral to successfully move into new online gaming activates such as casino and since then, the company haven’t looked back.
Software And Platform
The Coral casino was famed for using the Cryptologic software for so many years and whilst this is very much still the base for the casino, they now use several other software providers including IGT, Microgaming, NetEnt, OpenBet and Playtech, to name but a few. If you are suing the casino via your Windows PC then there is going to be a download option available, but for Mac users you will have to make do with the browser based, instant play option.
You will also be able to download the Coral Casino app for your mobile, which can be accessed from the App Store or simply by visiting the casino in your smartphones browser. On top of that you will be able to take advantage of some neat features such as a search functionality, free play and the ability to create a favourites list.
The casino takes on about 200 games in total, which is a reasonable amount, but not anything to write home about. The quality of the games on offer has dramatically improved over the last few years since they started to introduce more software providers and on the whole, the range of games were excellent. You will be able to see when they casino adds games that are ‘new’ via the bright blue sticker, but we have seen the same games tagged for some time now and aren’t sure how often this feature is updated.
You’re going to be able to choose from about 150 slots in total. Again, the number on offer doesn’t rival some of the more casino-focused programs out there, but it’s a number that should be more than enough for the majority of players. Some of the our highlights from the collection included Kong, Battle of the Gods, Buffalo Blitz and Gladiator.
There are 20 varieties of roulette on offer at Coral Casino, which is one of the best in the business. The mix of options was what really drew us in, with French, premium, American, European, Penny, pro, video, 3D and even a Marvel comic’s version all on offer.
Blackjack will include around 13 titles in total, which again is a more than good range. With this you can choose from super 21, American, peek, pontoon, UK, switch, double attack and duel blackjack, to name but a few.
It’s a similar story with the video poker as to the blackjack and the roulette with the video poker in that you get another good range of games to choose from. There are 15 video poker titles to choose from, including 2 ways royal, aces and faces, 4-line jacks or better, 50-line jacks or better and joker poker.
If there was one reason to sign up to Coral, then the jackpot section might just be it. In total there are 50 jackpot games to choose from and we think this might actually be the largest selection in the industry. The jackpot games range in terms of both quality and the jackpots themselves, but with the likes of Jackpot Giant, Iron Man 2, The Incredible Hulk and X-Men, you are going to be looking at 6 figure jackpots at least with these games alone.
About Coral Casino
As we mentioned earlier in the article, the company have been about since 1926, but the casino as you see it today only been running since 2012. A form of casino has been in operation for longer than this, but the Coral Interactive sector of the Gala Coral Group, have now taken the reigns and are moving forward in an aggressive manner.
What’s been interesting to see from Coral is that the merger with Gala has had a huge affect on which routes the company are able to succeed at. Sports betting is the main export from Coral, but with Gala’s expertise in online bingo and casino, it means the integration has seen them become an absolute behemoth in the online casino industry.