Meaning of “stake” in the English Dictionary

"stake" in English

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stakenoun [ C ]

uk /steɪk/ us /steɪk/

stake noun [ C ] (SHARE)

a share or a financial involvement in something such as a business:

He holds (= owns) a 40 percent stake in/of the company.
have a stake in sth

If you have a stake in something, it is important to you because you have a personal interest or involvement in it:

Employers have a stake in the training of their staff.

More examples

stake noun [ C ] (RISK)

the amount of money that you risk on the result of something such as a game or competition:

She spent two weeks in Las Vegas playing high-stakes blackjack at the casinos.
the stakes [ plural ]

In an activity or competition, the stakes are the reward for the person who wins or succeeds in it:

The team is playing for enormous stakes - the chance to play in the final.
the Stakes

used in the names of horse races in which the prize money is provided by all the owners of the horses that are competing in the race

the beauty, popularity, etc. stakes

a situation where someone is judged on how much of a particular quality they have:

The prime minister is not very high in the popularity stakes (= he is not very popular) at the moment.
raise/up the stakes

to increase the prize or reward in a competition or any activity in which you are competing

to make a situation more urgent or more difficult to ignore:

The stowaways are trying to raise the stakes by refusing to eat until they are given money and aid.

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stake noun [ C ] (STICK)

a strong stick or metal bar with a pointed end:

The stakes are pushed or hammered into the ground and can be used for supporting a plant or forming part of a fence.
the stake

in the past, a wooden post to which people were tied before being burned to death as a punishment:

In medieval Europe, many women were accused of being witches and were burned at the stake.

stakeverb [ T ]

uk /steɪk/ us /steɪk/

(Definition of “stake” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"stake" in American English

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stakenoun [ C ]

us /steɪk/

stake noun [ C ] (SHARE)

a share in something, esp. a financial share in a business, or an emotional investment in something:

He holds a 20% stake in the company.
Parents have a large stake in their children’s education.

In an activity or competition, the stakes are the costs or risks involved in competing:

Global competition has raised the stakes of doing business.

stake noun [ C ] (RISK)

the amount of money that you risk on the result of a game or competition:

Almost everyone has a stake in the global economy these days.

stake noun [ C ] (POLE)

a thick, strong, pointed wood or metal pole pushed into the ground and used to mark a spot or to support something:

Stakes in the ground marked the outline of the new building.


stakeverb [ T ]

us /steɪk/

stake verb [ T ] (RISK)

to risk harming or losing something important:

He has talent and ambition, and I’d stake my reputation on his success.

stake verb [ T ] (FASTEN TO POLE)

to fasten something to a stake:

Tomato plants should be staked soon after they are planted.

(Definition of “stake” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"stake" in Business English

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uk /steɪk/ us

[ C, usually singular ] FINANCE the amount that someone has invested in a company, often expressed as a percentage of the total share capital (= money invested in a business in the form of shares):

a 15%/3%/10%, etc. stake His 22% stake makes him the retailer's biggest shareholder.
have/hold/own a stake (in sth) The Chief Executive has a controlling stake in the company worth €58m.
acquire/buy/sell a stake (in sth)
increase/raise/reduce a stake (in sth)
have a stake in sth

if you have a stake in something, its success or failure will have an effect on you:

All three officials have a personal stake in the President's re-election as it would allow them to keep their jobs.
stakes [ plural ]

the amount of money you risk losing by guessing the result of something wrongly:

The City continued to play for high stakes in shares of the airline.

in a business activity, the stakes are the level of risk and possible profit involved:

Given the high stakes for both hardware makers and software suppliers, neither side is likely to give up easily.
at stake

if something like money, a job, or someone's reputation is at stake, it is in danger of being lost because of a particular situation:

The company's reputation is at stake and they need to act quickly and decisively.
Up to 300 jobs are thought to be at stake at head office.

stakeverb [ T ]

uk /steɪk/ us
stake a/your claim

to state that you have a right to something and that it should belong to you:

Foreign companies across a range of sectors seek to stake a claim in China's fast-growing economy.
stake a claim to/for/on sth Various countries are trying to stake their claims to the oil under the polar ice cap.

Phrasal verb(s)

(Definition of “stake” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)