Tatts Group

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Tatts Group Limited
Traded as ASXTTS
Industry Gambling
Founded Melbourne, Australia, Merger of Tattersalls Limited and UNiTab Limited in October 2006
Key people
Harry Boon, Chairman
Robbie Cooke, Managing Director & CEO
Products Wagering
Gaming machines
Decrease$200 million A$ (FY 2014)
Slogan Be part of it
Website www.tattsgroup.com

Tatts Group Limited, formerly Tattersall's Limited, is an Australian lottery/gaming company headquartered in Brisbane.


The company has three divisions: Lotteries, Wagering and Gaming Solutions.[1]


Tatts Group has a near monopoly on lotteries in Australia. As of September 2013 the company owned or leased:

  • Tatts Lotteries, which operates lotteries in Victoria, Tasmania, The Northern Territory and the Australian Capital Territory.
  • Golden Casket, which exclusively operates lotteries in Queensland.
  • NSW Lotteries, which exclusively operates lotteries in New South Wales.
  • SA Lotteries. which exclusively operates lotteries in South Australia.

Racing and Sports Wagering[edit]

Tatts Group holds wagering licenses in Queensland, South Australia, the Northern Territory and Tasmania. Most of these assets were previously owned by UniTAB before it merged with Tattersalls Limited to form the modern Tatts Group in 2007. All of the licenses entitle the company to the exclusive operation of physical betting shops which offer totalisor, fixed odds and sports wagering in their respective jurisdictions.

Its shops operated under several different brand names due to its string of acquisitions, including TAB, TattsBet, Unitab, and others. On 27 November 2014, Tatts Group announced that it would begin to unify all of its wagering properties under the new brand UBET in 2015.[2]

Gaming Solutions[edit]

Comprising three companies, Maxgaming, ByteCraft and Talarius PLC, Tatts Group both operates and provides services for electronic gaming machines (known in Australian slang as "pokies", shortened from "poker machines").


Provides monitoring solutions and value adding services to the Australian gaming machine industry. Many Australian state governments have legislated mandatory monitoring for all gaming machines they license, this is to protect the integrity of the industry. Under this system Monitoring Licenses are granted to independent companies who operate computer networks connected to all gaming machines within a relevant jurisdiction. All machine activity is monitored to ensure that correct prizes are paid and taxes are calculated correctly on revenue.

MaxGaming holds licenses for three jurisdictions, New South Wales, Queens and The Northern Territory. Queensland is the only monitoring license that isn't exclusive, nonetheless MaxGaming still has around an 80% market share in that state.[3]


ByteCraft is an electronics specialisation company that Tatts Group Acquired primarily to maintain gaming machines. However the company isn't limited to gaming machines as its major contract is for the maintenance of Telstra's payphone networks.[4]

Talarius PLC[edit]

Operates gaming machine arcades in the United Kingdom under the brands Quicksilver, Winners and Silvers. The company operates more slot machines in the United Kingdom than any other company, with 7461 machines spread across 173 venues[5]

Discontinued Operations[edit]

Tatts Pokies[edit]

Tatts Pokies operated over 13,000 gaming machines in Victoria starting from 1994. However the companies license expired on 16 August 2012 and was not renewed.[6]

The expiration of the license led Tatts to sue the state of Victoria for compensation under a contract government signed with them in the mid 90's. In the contract that state government signed, Tatts Group would be entitled to compensation for the infrastructure they had to pay for to set up their Tatts Pokies operation. The government materially benefited from this infrastructure.

The government argued that the contract stated that compensation would be paid if "licenses" were granted to any other party from 2012, but instead they granted "entitlements" to other operators and thus alleged they didn't have to pay the compensation.

On 26 June 2014 The Supreme Court of Victoria found that the "entitlements" were in effect licenses under the contract government signed, and awarded Tatts Group $451,157,286 Australian Dollars plus court costs and interest.[7]

Tabcorp Holdings also sued The State of Victoria under a separate agreement it had made with government, however the Supreme court of Victoria said that their agreement clearly only referred to the specific licenses of the time and thus Victorian Government owed no compensation to Tabcorp.[8] Tabcorp has since appealed this verdict.[9]

On 8 July 2014 The State of Victoria lodged an appeal in an attempt to avoid paying Tatts Group the compensation. Tatts has stated it will defend the appeal.[10]


The history of Tattersall's can be traced back to George Adams in 1881. Adams moved to Australia from England at the age of 16 and worked in many positions including publican, stockbroker and baker. In 1881 Adams who worked as a publican in Sydney took bets on horses which could be considered the start of the gambling company.

However, the company started a serious lottery when Adams moved to Hobart in 1895 a move supported by the Tasmanian Government. He set up his first operation there and eventually the company grew/developed in other states.


When Tattersall's was founded, George Adams structured the company so the original workers' families would inherit the profits. This created so-called "Tattersall's heirs": subsequent generations inherited a share in the company's profits. This was sometimes thought of as being unfair seeing people inherited the profits of a multi-million dollar company (that benefited from a state-granted monopoly on much of its business) simply through birth. In 2005 the company decided to list on the Australian Stock Exchange "Tattersall's heirs" were now allowed to sell their stake in the company and for the first time the public could buy into it. After the listing on the stock exchange local newspapers and other news media listed the names of these "Heirs".[11]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]