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Betting Trends In Africa

14th May, 20:46

Humans have been engaging in lotteries and sports betting for thousands of years. From ancient

Romans wagering on gladiators, to ancient state-run lotteries in China, betting activities have

remained to be part of our culture. In Africa, such activities have existed for centuries, with

coordinated government involvement starting in the 20 th century.

Over the last three decades, the African betting market has had an upward trajectory, giving rise

to a multi-billion dollar industry. However, the African betting scene is continually changing due

to several factors. Here are the latest betting trends in Africa.

Sports Betting On The Rise

Over the last decade, sports betting has exploded. In the top five countries to gamble in the

continent, almost half of the adult population has participated in sports betting at one point or the

other. In 2018, the sports betting market of South Africa, Kenya, and Nigeria totaled nearly $40

billion, and the value is still growing.

The sports betting craze is not only limited to the more established economies but also budding

ones. According to the South African government, more than half of the adults in the country

engage in sports betting regularly. Compared to other countries in the continent, South Africa is

more experienced with the sports betting industry.

More Regulation

While it's legal for adults to engage in betting activities, most African countries don't have clear

gambling laws that can fully govern the market. However, most governments are trying their best

to create laws that will protect betting fans while allowing them to capitalize on this growing


Earlier this year, the Kenyan president declared war on lotteries and betting site operators, after

putting some strict measures on the market late last year. Fortunately, it's still legal to bet in

Kenya, though other African governments are doing the same. In some countries like Uganda,

Egypt, Somalia, and Sudan, there's an official ban on sports betting, though punters can still

place wagers in casinos.

Mobile Betting Continues To Grow

While major betting operators in the continent have operated betting shops in almost every town

over the last decade, things are changing with the new generation of bettors. Today, most people

enjoy betting from the comfort of their houses, especially during times when people are trying to

keep a distance. Additionally, increased digital literacy and internet penetration has given the

African betting industry a new direction.


In Africa today, over 40% of all bets placed on sports come from mobile devices. Today, casinos

are also starting to take note of the new trends, prompting them to create refreshing and

entertaining mobile casino games that you can play for fun and money. In fact, industry experts

predict that mobile phone betting will dominate the African betting market by 2023.

Esports Betting

While the rest of the world has been betting on esports for years, Africans have been skeptical

about wagering on virtual games. However, esports betting is now starting to become a thing,

especially with the younger generation of punters. Even better, leading operators in the continent

are offering odds on different video games.