BETTING KENYA Gambling revolutionizing the African sports industry 2 years ago Mary Ngaruiya Post Views: 525 The sports industry in Africa has been on a consistent rise. Kenya, Nigeria, and South Africa are the top countries on the continent with the most established sports and sports gambling industries. Sports wagering has been present on the continent since ancient times. The activity involved less refined forms such as betting on cock and bullfights. The latter have been some of the most dominant cultural sports famous in the African Heritage. The most popular sports for betting in Africa are football, horse racing, and basketball, though other sports are catching up with time. Why now? Africa is one of the poorest continents, and most economies are 3rd world where putting a meal on the table is the primary concern to a majority of the families. While betting is fun and entertainment, you need to have a minimum wager to enjoy and probably stand a chance to win some easy cash. Most Africans considered gambling as a luxury that only the rich and the middle-class income earners could afford. Currently, the economic status in most countries in the African continent has changed for the best. People’s perceptions of the activity have also changed. The Role of Gambling in the Sports Industry Gambling may be a contentious issue but also one of the lucrative businesses in the world. Africa has luckily been part of this revolution. Gambling is taking African economies in some incredible ways that critics of the activity always leave out. Gambling is not all doom and gloom. Keep reading to find out some of the outstanding roles sports wagering plays in sports. 1. Funding sponsorships Sportsbooks and other gambling stakeholders are among the primary sources of finance for sporting events. Most talented African athletes got nurtured through such sponsorships and scholarships into sports academies. Most of these athletes could not afford to turn their passions into careers were it not for sponsorships and scholarships from major sportsbooks. Additionally, Sportsbooks sponsor major sporting activities like football leagues or clubs participating in major tournaments. We can attest to some occurrences when a club missed a one in a lifetime opportunity to participate in an international match because they could not afford to pay tickets for their team. Sponsorships aid in such circumstances, to the ordinary person, it might not be much, but to the athlete and their families, it means the world. 2. Endorsement deals Some betting firms also offer famous athletes endorsement deals as their brand ambassadors. These deals usually benefit both the athlete and the sponsor or endorser. Endorsements are indeed the reason some of these famous athletes have huge paychecks. For any young or budding athletes, getting endorsed would be a dream come true. In Africa, choosing sports as a career has been treated as a joke. With some athletes earning more than $100 Million annually from endorsements, any parent wouldn’t mind their children pursuing sports. 3. Supporting grassroots clubs Local sports clubs get sponsorships from betting firms enabling their athletes to participate in major sporting events, which most can’t afford due to financial constraints at this level. For instance, the Kenyan national football club-Harambee Starts- got sponsored for the 2019 AFCON by Betin, a sports betting firm in Africa. Bet9ja offered sponsorship to NNL, Nigeria National Football clubs in 2017. Various betting firms continue to grace local and international teams in the African Premier League and African Cup of Nations matches. Without support from these firms, most grassroots teams and clubs wouldn’t get the opportunity to feature in major leagues. Unfortunately, most of these teams are not even financially stable to train the athletes or afford a professional trainer. 4. The boom in Broadcasting of sporting events Betting firms strike commercial deals with TV stations to air sporting events to spark the urge of betting in most citizens. Watch a match developing live on the TV is enough to give you an adrenaline rush, but it’s even intense if you have wagered on the game or a team. The need for punters to follow games and the odds getting updated now and then has necessitated sportsbooks to invest in commercializing the events, fixtures, and odds. It is inevitable for even those who are not sports fans to get attracted to trying their luck. Gambling is not a vice, as most African folks get forced to believe. Besides, gambling has initiated chain reactions in our economies in enormous ways. Gambling, according to experts, earns economies taxes worth more than $40 billion in Africa. Such revenues are good enough to develop regions if well managed. Professional athletes gain a lot from sponsorships and contracts from betting firms. It’s our responsibility to enlighten you on everything concerning wagering, sports, and casinos. About Post Author Mary Ngaruiya Mary Ngaruiya is a social planner and a sports lover. I have both the capacity and the passion to analyze sports, casino games, and peoples’ interactions in these spaces. Gambling has a pivotal role in the social, technological, and economical spheres of human lives, which I understand and acknowledge, therefore giving unbiased analysis on the same. See author's posts Mary NgaruiyaMary Ngaruiya is a social planner and a sports lover. I have both the capacity and the passion to analyze sports, casino games, and peoples’ interactions in these spaces. Gambling has a pivotal role in the social, technological, and economical spheres of human lives, which I understand and acknowledge, therefore giving unbiased analysis on the same. 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