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Where To Bet On The Mercury Prize


For many in the music industry it doesn’t get bigger than winning the Mercury Prize, as it’s a huge deal that can make of break a musician’s career. Awarded to the best album of the year, it’s an annual British event that’s open to artists from across the UK and Ireland, selecting music from any genre. Here we’ll take a closer at what the event is, and how you can better place your money when it comes to betting on the award winners themselves.

Previously known as The Mercury Music Prize, it’s become an institution, being coveted by artists from all genres. Starting out in 1992, it focuses on awarding those from Britain and Ireland, and was initially set-up as a direct alternative the Brit Awards. Quickly becoming its own thing, the award is regarded as having a great deal of prestige, as it holds a serious amount of critical weight behind it. Not only that, but musicians whose albums are awarded see a massive spike in sales, which can be huge for those looking to make a name for themselves beyond critical acclaim with the general public.

With so much to gain for winning artists, this sees a great deal of competition for those participating hoping to win. How do you best spot those winners though, and what are the signs to look for when putting your money down on a Mercury Prize nomination?

Where To Bet The Mercury Prize:


Unfortunately with this being a UK based music prize you’ll be hard pressed to find an American sportsbook currently offering bets on it.


Everyone across Canada will find that Bet365 Sportsbook will best serve them when betting on the awards.

Everywhere Else:

This will be Bet365 Sportsbook again, with its comprehensive range of Mercury Prize bets across the board for the duration of the event.

What is The Mercury Prize?

Initially established by the British Phonographic Industry, The Mercury Prize would begin in 1992 as a way of finding the best album of the year. First getting its name from Mercury Communications, it would later go on to be sponsored by a succession of other brands and businesses. These would include Technics, Panasonic, and Barclaycard to name just a few, along with the BBC, who’ve televised the event in the past. In order to be eligible for the prize, at least 50% of the band members must be either British or Irish if they want to enter their album for that year.

Winning the ‘Album of the Year’ not only sees a monetary prize for entrants, but also a sales increase by a huge percentage. The competition itself generally runs as follows, with it taking place over several months annually in the lead-up to final awards show itself:

  • The Shortlist: Listening to all the albums that have been entered over the months, the judges decide upon a final shortlist of their twelve ‘Albums of the Year’.
  • Judging Panel: Anonymously made up of music professionals, it includes journalists, producers, presenters, and musicians, as they decide upon the albums every step of the way.
  • Winners: Meeting on the day of the awards show itself, the judges decide upon their final ‘Album of the Year’ from the shortlist, awarding it the Mercury Prize and money.

Anybody can enter their album into the contest, as all they need is the entry fee, meaning there’s a lot of entries to work through for the judges. Who are most likely to make it though, and which artists are the safer bet when it comes to placing a successful wager?

Common Mercury Prize Questions:

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What sort of bets are being offered?:

Betting on the Mercury Prize winner is extremely straightforward, as it’s mainly the ‘To Win Outright’ bet you’ll be presented with. Offering all of the nominees, you can choose from the list of artists and their respective odds projected alongside them. Simple to manage, you shouldn’t have any difficulty navigating it, as you just pic who you think will be awarded ‘Album of the Year’. You can also bet on as many artists as you like, effectively spreading your money across the board, allowing you to potentially recoup some profit.

How do I best spot a winning album?:

This is where it gets a little more difficult, as the judges’ panel itself is essentially kept anonymous from the public. There’s a lot of contention over the awards, although sometimes it can be dead certain when it comes to an extremely well received album that year. What you’ll need to do though, is to see through all the hype, as this tends to cloud things when it comes to making a successful prediction. Marketing buzz doesn’t always make up for quality and, with the judges being professionals in the industry, they tend to see through a lot of it. This may not always be the case, but sometimes it’s the smaller albums that come out of the left-field, and you want to be looking at the critics for their choices more often than not.

How to Bet On The Mercury Prize:

Bet365 Sportsbook:

First head straight down the left side of the page, before going on to select ‘Specials’, along with ‘United Kingdom’, which will come up directly underneath. This brings up the betting markets in the middle of the page, and you can then choose ‘Mercury Prize’ for that particular year. With the choice of ‘To Win Outright’, you can then bring up the current nominees, along with their projected odds, and making your selection creating your betting coupon.

The Mercury Prize Betting Strategy:

It’s always difficult to tell exactly who will win the award, what with some of the various different ‘controversies’ in the past, but you can have a clear idea. To start with you should look at what the critics are saying about each of the albums, pulling up different review sites to find the aggregate scores for the entries. This should give you something to work with, and you can typically find all of this through the album’s Wikipedia page and Metacritic.
Getting a bit of a background on each of the albums is a good idea too, along with seeing who has reached the shortlist before. Once you gain a clearer view of all your options, you should then be able to make a far more informed choice when betting.

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