All applications will be processed as efficiently as possible but the time required varies with:-
- the completeness and accuracy of the application
- the complexity of the ownership structure and the commercial proposition
- the commercial readiness and preparations of the applicant and their ability to respond quickly to questions arising in the investigation process.
The application and approval process splits into three pieces- suitability, fair games and adequate processes. Statistics show that, in 2009, the process ran as follows.
- Suitability - the average licence approval in 2009 took 60 days from receipt of the application, although the spread was from within a month to greater than a year. The critical delay factor is the time taken by the applicant to respond to due diligence questions.
- Fair games - the average initial equipment approval in 2009 took 100days. Best and worst variations within this are extreme, reflecting the quality of submissions, the speed and focus of response; the norm is less than 2 months. New games approvals over the last three months have taken an average of 21 days to grant from initial application; again there is a wide variation within this average, with better results being routinely achieved by applicants with existing testing house relationships, good software development teams and focused project management.
- Adequate processes - the average initial ICS approval in 2009 took 60-90 days. The Commission's final ICS review is normally completed within a week of receipt. The difference between the two being that initial submissions are frequently incomplete and unfocused- again the difference between good applications and unfocused, un-thought applications is stark.
The three processes can be run in parallel or in series; neither time-line is likely to be a simple arithmetic product of the above. The "in-parallel" applicant will usually take a little longer than the time required for games testing ,to complete all three components. The "in-series" applicant will normally be able to progress ICS and games testing together.
Live activation is routinely achievable, from the Commission's side, within six months of initial application. Delivery time is, in practice, dependent on the applicant's ability to plan and focus- there is little to prevent the Commission from moving at the same speed as the applicant in its progress towards live activation.