Gambling has always existed in Singapore, in one form or another – from the social to the syndicated. Right up to the 1970s, organised gambling was the domain of Chinese “secret society” triads. With gambling came a spiral of crime and violence. For the syndicates, it was about making huge amounts of money. For those who are into gambling, it is a way of life.
Banning gambling will not erase its footprint – it would only drive the activities underground. As a pragmatic approach, the government established Singapore Pools on 23 May 1968 to provide a safe outlet for gamblers, and to neutralise the syndicates and their illegal activities. As said in a Finance Ministry statement back then:
“It is necessary to recognise the existence of gambling and to place it on a legal footing so that those who by nature are inclined towards betting can do so without breaking the law. At the same time, part of the amounts paid as stake moneys can be utilised for the benefit of the citizens of the Republic.”
Since its formation, Singapore Pools has been playing an important role in gradually changing the turbulent, risky gambling scene of the 1960s and 1970s to one where the social cost to individuals and families has become more manageable.
With a more regulated environment, we are able to educate customers about playing with care, playing within their means and dealing with the risk of problem gambling. As a socially responsible gaming operator, Singapore Pools upholds self-regulating guidelines in the way we run our operations day-to-day.
More significantly, as a not-for-profit organisation, the surpluses generated by Singapore Pools have been distributed since 1968 to benefit good causes in the sports, charity, community development, education, health, and arts sectors.
Some of the iconic projects that we have funded include Singapore's first National Stadium in 1973, the Indoor Stadium in 1988, and the Esplanade - Theatres On The Bay in 1996. We are also principal sponsors for the annual nationwide events, the Chingay Parade and National Day Parade. Through our parent, Tote Board, Singapore Pools also provides ongoing funding for national infrastructure such as the Esplanade - Theatres on the Bay, The Sports Hub and Gardens By The Bay.
Today, Singapore Pools contributes about $2 billion annually to the Government in the form of taxes and duties, and for the funding of good causes.
The truth is, none of these good things would have been possible if Singapore Pools had not provided that safe outlet for customers.
Today, the combined effects of affluence, globalisation and the Internet has ushered in a gambling environment that is multifaceted, porous and without boundaries. There is the ominous threat from illegal operators who have no qualms about causing gambling addiction. The attractive profits have also prompted innovative means of getting off the radar screens of the law, such as disguising online gambling as Internet or mobile games.
The betting industry is a challenging environment. Yet, the battle must go on -- against those who could harm our people, especially our young. At stake are not just customers who may gamble away their livelihood, but the peace of mind and happiness of their loved ones.
Being entrusted by the society to provide a safe outlet for gambling in Singapore, we are committed to operate with the highest standards of responsible gambling.
A world-class socially responsible gaming company trusted by customers and valued by the community.
We provide safe and trusted betting to counter illegal gambling.
Respect: We embrace diversity and treat everyone with respect and dignity.
Integrity: We mean and do what we say.
Innovation: We challenge our assumptions and adopt better ideas to drive performance.
Customer Care: We care for our customers.
Community: We uplift the community through active engagement and collaboration with our beneficiaries and partners.
One Organisation: We act as one organisation guided by a common purpose.
We are 100% owned by the Tote Board which reports to the Ministry of Finance. Our betting products and services are regulated by the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Ministry of Social and Family Development.
Our sales channels include our network of branches and third-party retail agents located at supermarkets, provision shops, convenience stores and football clubs, as well as 'live' sports entertainment venues.
Customers who meet our social safeguards requirements can open a Singapore Pools Account.
|TOTO||6 out of 49 lotto game||May 1968|
|The Singapore Sweep||7-digit pre-printed sweepstakes game||February 1969|
|4D||4-digit lottery game||May 1986|
|Sports Betting||Football and motor racing||March 1999|