Africa - State of the Nations in the Gambling sector

On 7 February 2019, South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa delivered the annual State of The Nation Address in front of Parliament in Cape Town, South Africa. With the 6th Annual BiG Africa Supershow quickly approaching, Eventus International shares its state of the nations for the gambling sector in Africa.

South Africa – Online gaming set to suffer from tight regulation

Certain aspects of the Gambling Amendment Bill have operators worried as it makes it difficult to operate. The bill introduces a whole series of amendments across the National Amendment Act of 2004. Some of these amendments are exceptionally hard on the participants of the market.

For instance, dog racing is now made illegal, alongside with betting on it. Although this move is an ethical decision, a lot of people will become unemployed.

The Gambling Amendment Bill centralizes the power of issuing licenses. While previously all licenses for casinos and limited pay-out machines were granted by local authorities, now it is the job of National Gambling Board. Only time will tell whether this will be a good or bad thing for the sector.

Finally, the fewer license is going to be issued, leaving some companies out of business and others competing for remaining licenses. Gaining clarity on these regulatory changes should be on the top of every South African operator’s list this year at BiG Africa 2019.

East Africa – Big growth and big tension

Earlier this week, it was reported that sports betting and other sports related content is the most searched topic of interest in Kenya. According to a 2019 report by Hootsuite and We Are Social, 11 of the 20 top Google searches were directly related to betting. This is due to East African operators having diverse strategies for online and offline marketing.

Kenya also has the highest number of millennials who take part in sports betting in sub-Saharan Africa. On average, Kenyan millennials spend more than the $50 sub-Saharan monthly average

Although this growth is great for the industry, there is also rumours of regulatory restriction floating around the news recently. After Uganda reportedly banned gambling two weeks ago; religious leaders and politicians in Kenya and Tanzania are reportedly also seeking to make similar bans within the next few years.

Clarity on these regulatory developments and the best lessons on customer acquisition and retention will all be covered at the BiG Africa Supershow this year.

West Africa – Africa’s growth champion

Of all the countries included Gambling Outlook 2013/17, Nigeria came out on top in terms of potential for the fastest growth, which could be anywhere north of 17% in terms of year-on-year growth.

Online sports betting has seen tremendous growth in Nigeria since then. Mobile payment is now starting to create even more gains for online sports betting operators.

In a previous article, we noted that mobile betting transactions in Nigeria had increased from $420 million in 2016 to $620 Million in 2018, which equates to about 47,6% increase over the 2-year period or 23.3% growth annually.


Although gambling industry growth in Africa is consistently defying expectation due to powerful marketing, regulation seems to be a concerning factor on the continent as we move closer to the 6th Annual BiG Africa Supershow.

Taking place at Emperors Palace, Johannesburg, South Africa from 25-26 March 2019, the Supershow will bring Africa’s leading experts of all disciplines in the gaming industry together to discuss up-to-the minute developments in regulation, technology, marketing, and best practice.

Register for the BiG Africa Supershow now to join the discussion in March. Seats are selling out fast!

Register here:

Contact us today to discuss our sponsorship and exhibition packages for the BiG Africa Supershow 2019

Lou-Mari Burnett
Marketing Director
Eventus International
Email: [email protected]
Phone: +27829075850


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