Legal regulatory framework for online casinos in Kenya

Kenya is considered one of the largest African gambling markets. It’s been growing steadily over the years and is predicted to reach almost $100 million in 2024. Since it’s such a big market, it needs to be protected, which is why there are various legalities in place to protect the well-being of the citizens of Kenya.

The legislation imposed is relevant to entertainment also. For instance, to be able to find the best online casino in Kenya, players need to look out for various things, and one of them is that it follows the country’s gambling laws and regulatory framework. But what laws are there and who are they regulated by?

History of gambling in Kenya

We can trace the origins of gambling laws in Kenya back to 1966. The Betting, Lotteries and Gaming Act set the framework for all casino and gambling practices in the African country. It was put in place with the goal to control and regulate any form of betting, lotteries, or gaming establishments.

After this Act was put in place in Kenya, the Betting Control and Licensing Board (BCLB) came to fruition. This is the regulatory body that still has the authority to regulate the gambling industry throughout the country. It also issues and renews licenses for all betting companies throughout Kenya, ensuring these companies are complying with the provisions of the 1966 Act.

Since the Betting, Lotteries, and Gaming Act was introduced, the gambling industry has made many strides in Kenya. It started off with land-based betting establishments and casinos, but it wasn’t until the 2000s that we started to see more of these popping up online. With the increased availability of the internet due to remote work, more users are starting to use online casinos on their PCs or smartphones.

Current legal framework

As we mentioned, gambling regulations and laws originated from the Betting, Lotteries, and Gaming Act, which also established the BCLB. This is still the case today. If a company or organisation wants to offer gambling services legally, they need to apply for a license.

There are different types of licenses available, including Public Gaming, Bookmakers, and Public Lottery. For each application, the company must pay a range of fees based on whether they are a local or foreign applicant. For example, if you want to apply for a Public Gaming license and you’re a local applicant, you’ll need to pay a total of 4,750,000 Kenyan Shillings, but if you’re foreign, you must pay 5,500,000 Kenyan Shillings.

Licensing requirements for online casinos

If you wish to start an online casino that caters to Kenyan customers, you must apply for a Public Gaming license from the BCLB. It’s a bit of a long-winded process but it is worth it once you have all the right paperwork and are complying with local laws.

Here are the requirements needed to receive a Public Gaming license for online casinos:

  • You’ll be given a form from the BCLB that you must complete and submit.
  • You should also put together a detailed business proposal that states your company’s concept (i.e., online casino with a focus on slot machines).
  • Pay the application fee of 1,000,000 Kenyan Shillings, regardless of whether you’re a local or foreign applicant. You must also pay the license grant fee, premises grant, annual operating fee, annual fee, and investigation fee.
  • Provide a wide range of other pieces of information and forms such as your business name, form of business, names of directors and shareholders, a PIN and tax compliance certificate, certificate of Good Conduct, and memorandum.
  • Submit a statement declaring the benefits of your business for players, the Kenyan public, the Kenyan government, and the directors and shareholders.
  • Submit a proposal on how to reduce the effects of gambling addiction on underage players.
  • Go through the dispute resolution procedure
  • Demonstrate the ability to pay the rest of the fees for your application.

There might be different requirements based on your specific type of business, so ensure you talk to someone from the BCLB and receive professional business help before filing your license application.

Compliance with local laws

Once legal online casinos in Kenya have their gambling licenses from the BCLB, they need to ensure they’re staying compliant with local laws at all times. They cannot just receive the license and then do whatever they want, as they will go through regular audits, and the regulatory authority will check to ensure you’re following the rules.

You can ensure you’re staying compliant as a casino Kenya online site by putting in place a wide range of anti-money laundering measures to keep everything in line with the law. You should also have player protection policies as well as follow the country’s data protection and privacy laws.

Failure to comply with these laws can lead to penalties and fines, or you could potentially have your license revoked.


Kenya is known for its safe and fun online casinos, which are made possible through the BCLB’s regulatory framework. If you’re a budding business owner wanting to start an online casino, you must ensure they follow the proper licensing procedures. As a player, you should also look for the BCLB stamp of approval before signing up for an account.


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