The Influx of Sports Betting Propel Cashless Policy in Africa

Africa’s quest for a cashless economy gains massive momentum over the last couple of years. The mantra for much African government is promoting cashless policy among its populace. The widespread of online sports betting is leading the charge for a cashless economy policy in Africa.

In contrast, the average young African adults now carry out all their daily activities using their mobile phones. The iGaming betting and gambling have been tools many youths use as a medium of transactions forcing many to own a mobile money account. The cashless economy brings transparency; reduce corruption across different sectors; corruption has been the bedrock of African struggles over the years. These as limited the African growth to achieve its full potentials of becoming the leader in its own right, although, over the years we have seen numbers of digital payment solution channels establishing themselves in the region coupled with a host of telecommunication companies also dabbling into the financial sector has been a testament to the massive penetration growth the financial industry has achieved in recent times such as mobile money, digital wallets, card payment cryptocurrencies, and other online payments methods are increasingly been adopted in many business and the iGaming industry is no exception which today has played a significant role in encouraging the African mantra cashless policy.

Particularly the iGaming industry has been experiencing exponential growth in recent years thanks to the penetration of mobile phone as mentioned is the first choice for the average African populace to carryout all activities that has to do with online activities and has played a role influencing the widespread of sports betting among the youth seeing vast numbers of African youth preferred using their mobile device to place bet at the comfort of they homes while a host of iGaming betting companies adopted different payment solution for customers to complete their transactions before placing a bet even though the unbanked population is still considerable high but the emergence of the iGaming industry has closed the gap of financial exclusion in Africa especially during the COVID-19 pandemic prompt many African government to imposed lockdown in they respective countries seeing many business going online with the service rendering and iGaming industry played its part with many bettors who has never gone online to wager bet turn to digital punters while the financial literacy have increasingly seen online, and mobile money channels take center stage in Africa.

However, this set of unbanked masses now use mobile money services, bank cards, and different digital payment channels. According to the Geopoll survey, mobile money service is becoming more popular in Africa, particularly in the Eastern part of Africa. Out of the over 300 million registered mobile money accounts in Africa, about half are found in the region’s eastern part. The majority of the masses who use these services are explicitly using it to top their betting account and other essential activities. For example, in 2019, one of the popular mobile payment solution brands in Africa, Safaricom, owned by M-Pesa, says 25% of its customers are bettors’ using the mobile money service to deposit/receive payment from betting companies through their M-Pesa e-wallet account.

Indeed, the cashless policy is gaining momentum in Africa through different e-commerce and betting companies. The gaming operators face new challenges to overcome the combined local optimization and further market expansion with a fast and secure payment solution. Some recent reports are showing current international trends in terms of money circulation via the internet. Wordplay revealed that e-commerce transactions are expected to surpass US$4.6 trillion globally by 2022, with 140 online payments method in use today. Both online and mobile channels will account for 68 percent of transaction volume in 2024, up from 63 percent in 2019. According to the new study Digital International Money Transfer Key Trends, Player Innovation & Market Forecasts 2019-2024; from Juniper Research has found that global international digital money transfer transaction volume will reach 2billion by 2024, and Africa will account for 15% of the total volume, up from 1.1 billion in 2019.

The study founded that this dominance is primarily due to the superior app-based experience available on mobile, rising interoperability of mobile money solutions, and highly competitive pricing from app-based disruptors and affordable mobile phones in the continent.

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