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Nigeria's online gambling market is gaining momentum, poised for significant growth amidst demographic advantages and technological advancements

With a youthful population predicted to surpass 400 million by 2050, Nigeria presents an enticing market forecasted to generate €675.1m in gross gaming revenue by 2025.


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The demographic landscape, with approximately 41% of the population aged 14 and under, underscores Nigeria's potential to rival South Africa as a leader in the African gambling industry. The influx of international brands like Betano and Betway reflects the market's evolution from local operators to a more diverse landscape.

 

Olabimpe Akingba, a legal practitioner with expertise in gaming, highlights the pivotal role of technology and increasing internet penetration in driving the market's expansion. However, regulatory challenges pose significant hurdles to sustained growth. The presence of both federal and state regulators has led to tensions and ongoing legal battles, hindering the industry's development.

 

Opeyemi Osilojo, formerly with Parimatch, identifies regulatory complexities as a major impediment to market growth, emphasizing the need for clear and harmonized regulations akin to the US model. Currently, operators must navigate federal and state licensing requirements, resulting in compliance burdens and financial implications.

 

Harmonization between federal and state regulators is crucial for streamlining operations and unlocking the industry's full potential. Akingba stresses the need for collaboration to alleviate compliance burdens and facilitate a conducive regulatory environment for operators.

 

Lagos, Nigeria's largest city, stands at the forefront of the gambling landscape, with the Lagos State Lotteries and Gaming Authority (LSLGA) playing a pivotal role.

 

Despite regulatory uncertainties, Bashir Are, LSLGA's chief executive, remains optimistic, highlighting Lagos' transparent regulatory framework and its potential to surpass South Africa's gambling market.

 

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BetKing, a leading player in Nigeria's gambling market, continues to innovate and enhance customer experiences. Onu Abraham, corporate communications manager at KingMakers, emphasizes BetKing's commitment to responsible gambling and collaborations to solidify its market position.

While the market shows promise, concerns persist regarding the black market and illegal operators. Regulatory efforts aim to address these challenges, including banning orders and increased collaboration with national communications bodies and financial fraud units.

Despite regulatory hurdles, Nigeria's gambling market remains on an upward trajectory, buoyed by technological advancements, increasing internet access, and a youthful population with a strong interest in sports. While regulatory uncertainties linger, stakeholders remain hopeful for harmonized regulations and sustained growth in the industry.

By fLEXI tEAM

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