The State of East Africa Gambling Revenue Due to Coronavirus

The Covid-19 pandemic is really ravaging the whole world, and East Africa has faced devastating impacts on sports betting. In the recent past, this region has been experiencing a surge in the number of betting companies, coupled with an increase in the number of gambling enthusiasts. However, due to the Coronavirus effect, all major sporting events have been brought to their knees in just a matter of weeks.

Loss of Revenue

As a result of the pandemic, all East African betting shops have shut down, and there is no lifeblood like in the past, which has kept the industry moving. The major consequence is the loss of revenue among the countries. For instance, Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania used to record annual revenues of $29 million, $12 million and $10 million respectively when the market was booming. Today, no country can raise even 10% of the above figures. While the Covid-19 disease has severely hit the global market, the impact in East Africa is immeasurable. Remember, most customers in the region prefer offline betting, yet there are no games to bet on.

Ivan Kalanzi, a GAL Sports Betting brand ambassador, notes that gambling sales have sunk to a record low, each country recording just 1% of their usual revenue. This is because most non-essential enterprises have been closed to contain the spread of the virus. As long as there is uncertainty about when the major leagues will begin, industry experts maintain that the East African gambling industry still remains on the losing streak.

The Divide

While the industry in East Africa is crumbling, there is a sharp divide between bettors. Some of them view it as a break from the losses they make when they make wrong predictions. Essentially, this group feels it is time to save. On the other hand, some enthusiasts are disappointed in the lack of action. They comprise of the hopeful gamblers that aim to strike a jackpot and change their lives.

Idle Staff

All the betting companies have employed staffs to manage operations. However, due to the Covid-19 effects, most of them are very idle. In one of the busiest centres in Mbarara Municipality in Uganda, workers sit at the counters with nothing to do. Many of such centres are deserted across the countries in the region. Many of the employees recount that after the premier league was suspended, sales for normal football have decreased by 90%. For the better part of the day, they can only sell tickets for virtual games, of which each of them can manage only one.

As a consequence, employees have lost their livelihoods, some opting for other sources rather than working in gambling companies. On average, employers were earning a monthly salary of $1000. After the closure of all events, their take-home amount is a paltry 20% of the initial amount.


The world continues to grapple with the Covid-19 pandemic, and nobody is certain when the spread will end. This uncertainty has affected several businesses. Gambling in East Africa has crushed, and many workers have lost their jobs. The percentages of losses are huge, almost hitting the 100% mark. Nonetheless, there is hope that a vaccine will be found to save the world.

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