How Sports Betting Is Lowkey Creating Millionaires Weekly
According to Ademola Adebajo, CEO of Stakersden, a leading betting company in Lagos, punters cut across various demographics regardless of earning powers. Adebajo says, “Low income earning punters spend between N200 ($1) and N1000 ($5) on bets while high income earners, tagged ‘big ticket customers’ spend thousands more, although these big ticket customers are firmly in the minority.”
“Currently, we believe daily bets have reached five billion naira ($25 million) cumulatively across all the betting companies. Punters in the country are currently seeing this as a source of daily bread and it is not uncommon to see people appropriating a certain amount for betting daily,” Adebajo said.
Bet9ja, a major market leader in the betting scene in Nigeria, holds the record for the biggest payout weekend. In May 2015, the betting giant made payouts of close over half a billion Naira (N700 Million) in winning bets. To its credit, Bet9ja paid up quickly – a major achievement that most betting firms in Nigeria cannot boast of.
Sportbetting is really big business in Nigeria. With over $25 Million (N5 Billion) placed on stakes daily, it’s hard to imagine where the average Nigerian, who makes up the majority of the Sportbetting target audience, and who reportedly lives below the poverty line of $1 a day finds the cash to place bets. But place bets they do. And religiously too.
Rich Or Poor, Betting Is A Big Deal
Every weekend across the country, from the leaning wooden structures in Makoko in Lagos all the way to the cold confines of sport cafes in Wuse, to the sweaty market stalls in Umuahia, ‘viewing centers’ cater to the needs of a soccer-hungry horde, whose sole aim is to bet on outcomes of the biggest leagues in Europe.
Speaking with the Marketing Manager of Bet9ja, Tunji Meshioye, he gives us insight into the business model that makes this sort of huge payouts possible.
Two sides to a coin
In a country with high unemployment rate, the proliferation of betting companies has created tens of thousands of jobs in terms of operational staff, tech support, agents and so on.
According to Adebajo: “Majority of Nigerians live below the poverty line and any activity that can legitimately turn a small amount of money into large sums will always be appealing.”
Like every other form of gambling, the allure of betting is pretty simple. Bet small, win big. On the flipside, the desire for quick wins has caused many to take incredible risks with their income.