Sergeant Rich-Introduces Rebelbetting
RebelBetting is a piece of software for finding sports arbitrage opportunities or “surebets” from a Swedish outfit called Clarobet.
I have some experience over the last nine years of arbitrage betting so I am not blinded to the problems, but also I am aware of the potential, if one can get arb trading to work.
For those that don’t know, arbitrages or surebets are where you place bets covering all outcomes of the game, and where you are guaranteed a profit. Arbitrage situations happen regularly, hundreds of times every day, because different Bookies will alter their odds for particular outcomes in order to balance their own books. Or sometimes a Bookie simply sets the odds for an outcome a little higher than many other Bookmakers. All you have to do is spot when two competing Bookies offer odds that will give you a profit whatever the outcome.
For example in a two-outcome event, one Bookie offers 2.05 on outcome A and another offers 2.05 on outcome B. You stake 1 point on each outcome and are guaranteed a profit of 0.05 points whatever the outcome.
The criticisms and problems often aimed at arbitrage trading are:
- You need multiple accounts with many bookmakers and need to manage your account balances carefully to make sure funds are available when an arb comes along.
- The advantageous odds with a Bookmaker quickly disappear meaning the arb is no longer available.
- You sometimes get the odds with one bookmaker, before the odds on the second bookmaker disappear, leaving you with an exposed bet liability.
- It is time-consuming for small rewards.
- Bookies will close down accounts for successful arb traders. I suppose the advice given in newsletter #34 on “How to be a Mug punter” applies to any Bookie accounts that start accumulating profits.
Recently I’ve seen software programs that alert you when an arb opportunity is supposedly available. In theory this ought to give you an earlier opportunity to get on at the odds, than a slower e-mail or text alert system would give. Unfortunately some of these services are of very low quality, accompanied with inflated claims of the profits to be made.
Arbitrage trading has become more sophisticated over the years, including the use of Asian Handicaps and cross market arbs. These are bets on a mix of two or more different markets that cover all possible outcomes of an event. There are a lot of possible combinations which can result in a cross market arbitrage. Often, they exist longer as it isn’t so obvious to the Bookies that they are in an arb situation.
So how does RebelBetting shape up in this controversial field of arbitrage betting? First impression from the website and the software is that this product is a piece of class. In e-mail discussions about this review the Swedish publishers have been helpful and courteous. They have a refreshing ethos of wanting to behave with integrity. They are conservative about expectations and honest about the potential problems.
For example, they say: “The catch in sports arbitrage is that there are risks in the trade and you will experience them. Anyone who says otherwise is lying. But don’t worry; there are quite a few ways to avoid them, and to minimize the potential effects from them.”
Subscribers get a comprehensive 38 page “Boot Camp” e-book that will help both newbies and experienced traders get to grips with arbitrage trading and how to use the RebelBetting software. Trial users and those wishing to know before they go can get an abridged version of the e-book.
The Boot Camp book goes on to describe the risks referred to above and explains how to minimize the risks.
I downloaded the software version 3 earlier this week and was frankly amazed by the ease of use and wealth of features. On Tuesday v4 was released and includes more cross market arb opportunities. An example of the high class of the product was that when I installed v4 all my settings from v3 were ported seamlessly over to the new version.
Of course it still remains to be seen as to how easy and effective it will be in getting arb bets matched. But there are a couple of features that give me optimism. Below is a screen shot of the software in operation:
Here we see a simple arb with the current odds and a calculator working out the stakes for a guaranteed profit. (A nice little touch is the Betfair profit takes into account my current Betfair commission of 4.7%). So for total stakes/liability of 100.15 points the profit will be 2.25 or 2.18 points. Hence it is a 2.25% or 2.18% arb.
One nice feature is it shows how long the arb has been available! This one had been available for 1hr 48 min. This is very reassuring in view of the criticisms concerning the length of time Bookie odds are available. The stability of this arb may be because it is for an event that is 4 days away. Of course the negative is if you took this arb, your funds are tied up for 4 days. But you try getting 2+% from £100 held in a high street bank for 4 days! LOL!
The software features warnings, if there are any concerning the arb. The warnings and possible pitfalls are fully explained in the e-book. The software features visible and rather pleasant audible notifications when new arbs appear or odds change.
If you want to trade the arb, you click the Bet button and the browser window opens, logging you in automatically to the Bookie accounts. This saves a considerable amount of time, making it all the more possible to place your bets before the odds change. As well as this “auto login” feature, the software also features “auto surf” which in many cases will select the actual bet for you rather than you having to scramble around the Bookie website looking for the bet.
Here we see the Betting Browser open, automatically logged on to my accounts and with the event selected, you can bring each Bookie up to a full window using the keyboard Function keys:
Clarobet recommend a minimum bank of 1,000 Eur but recommend 2,000 Eur. What I will try to do is distribute 1,000 points around my chosen bookies and keep another 1,000 points in my Neteller account to enable me to quickly top up a bookie account if it becomes depleted. So my starting bank will be 2,000 points. The vendors estimate a conservative 10% to 20% profit per month. So I will be targeting a profit of 200 points per month during the review period. We will see how we get on!
The vendors offer a downloadable spread sheet to help keep track of the bets. They advise using 5 to 10% of your bank on each arb, so I’ll set my total bets to 100 points per arb. The spread sheet is extremely thorough and time spent studying it will pay off, as it is vital to keep track of your bets and your balances with the Bookmakers. It would take you hours to set up a similar spread sheet, even if you are expert enough in the use of Excel to do so.
I’ll paper trade for the first week or two until I get to grips with how it all works. I’ll take each bet up to the final confirm stage so that I can be 99% confident that the bets would get accepted if not paper trading.
Clarobet recommend starting with accounts with 10 Bookmakers, they also advise in the e-book which bookies crop up most often in your arbs. You then filter the software to only let you know arbs involving those Bookmakers and you can set a limit on the %age arbs that you are interested in. So, for example, I have now set it to only let me know about arbs above 2.0%.
I must emphasise that there is a lot of material to work through before you are ready to go.
- You need to teach yourself about arbing from the e-book.
- You need to study the website to understand the software.
- You need to study the spread sheet to get your bets and balances correctly recorded.
- You need to set up about 10 Bookie accounts and get them funded.
That’s a lot of work and RebelBetting is not for the faint-hearted or those who want easy, work-free profits. Along with the other things I do, like my reviews, the newsletters and my regular betting, I have spent a week on the above points and am still not quite ready to go with my review. I’ve been letting the software run on a couple of evenings and easily found 5 available arbs with my Bookmakers giving between 2.89% and 4.29% profit on them, which encourages me to do the work above, in order to succeed.
If possible, during the review I will make a note of how long the arb had been available before I got my bets on. I’ll also note how far away the event is, to give an idea of how long funds are tied up.
I’ll also indicate what time of day I got the arb, so readers can get an idea of how many arbs they could get, depending on their work schedule. You can have the software running in the background, while you get on with other things, but nevertheless, you do need to act and go to the Bookies when an arb arrives that you fancy betting on.
A range of subscriptions to the software are available: 1 week trial 9 Euros; 1 month 129 Euros; 3 months 116 Euros per month; 6 months 99 Euros per month; 1 year 89 Euros per month. There is also a free-mode which is not time limited. This allows you full use of the software, but will only tell you about arbs up to 0.6%. This is a great way to learn to use the software and to paper-trade on these low arbs until you are familiar with the software and with the Bookie websites. You could then upgrade to a paid trial, once you have proved to yourself that you can succeed, at which point you will have access to the higher value arbs.
I think that just about covers everything. I hope to start the review in a few days time.