The Sports Betting Market in Nigeria


The entire continent of Africa has been experiencing a massive surge in terms of sports wagering. Various governments all around the continent have been heavily investing in the expansion of the gambling industry. And since the online sports betting world has been rising in popularity, many Africans are enriching and enhancing their already formidable relationships with global sports and athletics. Countries like Kenya, for example, are leading the way when it comes to sports betting activities. The Kenyan government itself has issued numerous licenses to various operators in order to provide gambling services to the public. This is a trend that is consistent across the continent in numerous countries.


Nigeria is another country that the gambling world has been paying close attention to, especially when it comes to sports betting. Football is considered the most popular sport in Africa. In fact, the popularity of football is a major booster to the increasing prominence of online sports betting in the region. Strangely enough, locals are also starting to follow American football activities. Africans are looking into both professional and college football lines on sports betting sites. With more than 1.3 billion people in Africa, the continent is rife with opportunities for the expansion of this space. Research has shown that 60 million people between the ages of 18 and 40 are highly engaged in sports in the country of Nigeria. It’s also estimated that Nigerians spend somewhere around $15 per day on sports wagering. There’s no denying that the country is one of the continent’s leaders when it comes to sports betting activities.

Nigeria as a Sports Betting Hub

Aside from South Africa and Kenya, Nigeria is one of the most formidable online gambling markets in the entire continent. While other forms of gambling are slowly gaining prominence all over the continent, it’s sports betting that has been the overwhelmingly popular choice for so many Africans. Again, football is a very popular sport for locals. But their wagering interest hasalso extended to other athletic endeavors like American football, rugby, and cricket. The traditional horse racing wagers are also immensely popular among the continent. But it’s football that has reigned supreme over the years.


There’s very little consistency when it comes to the legislation of betting and gambling activities in Africa. A country like Tanzania has had some significant developments in terms of allowing the industry to flourish in Africa. However, there are other nations who remain hesitant and aren’t speeding the process up as most people would like. That’s why many African locals will resort to offshore platforms and foreign operators in order to partake in their favorite gambling activities.


In Nigeria, it’s more interesting because it’s the regional authorities who have major control over the regulations and laws surrounding gambling in the country. And this also includes sports betting activities. There are more than 200 million people in Nigeria, which makes it the highest-populated country in the continent. It also has the largest GDP of $443 billion. The gambling ban in Nigeria was lifted back in 2004, and this paved the way for a stream of investments into the gambling sector immediately.


Online gambling in Nigeria is not regulated on a federal level, and the bureaucracies of the federal government are somewhat messy. But that hasn’t stopped around 30% of the Nigerian population to place sports bets on a daily basis. That means that more than 65 million people in the country partake in sports betting every single day. 


Since more bookmakers are sprouting up in Africa, especially in countries like Nigeria, there’s very little reason to doubt that the industry will continue to grow and flourish over the next few years. In the past, sports wagering in the continent was subject to vast restrictions and prohibitions. But over recent years, various governments in Africa have become more lenient in their stance on sports betting. Aside from that, more Africans are now gaining access to modern technology that allows them to conveniently engage in sports betting activities. These are services that have become available to the general public at any time of the day.


Investors have taken notice of this rising sector of the African economy and are eager to actively participate in stimulating that growth even further.


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