SportPesa Is ‘Blowing Up’ As Kenya’s Largest Online Sports Betting Service
Its hard to imagine that the SportPesa online sports betting service has only been operational for just over a year since it commenced operations in Kenya. In the relatively short time that the service has been available, SportPesa has established a possibly unassailable(?) lead as Kenya’s first and largest online sports betting offering.
Its hard to miss the SportPesa brand online or offline given the massive amounts of money they are spending on advertising. As a result, their top-of-mind awareness is firmly established with a large number of growing customers throughout Kenya.
SportPesa was established by Pevans East Africa after they were granted a license by the Betting Control & Licensing Board (BCLB) to launch their service in Kenya. According to media coverage from February 2014, Pevans East Africa put in a staggering Kes. 300 million to launch SportPesa showing their intent to essentially corner the market. In many ways, based on credible information I secured recently, SportPesa is most certainly ‘blowing up’.
Here is how the numbers stack up. As of this writing, SportPesa has over 800,000 registered users which is amazing when you consider that they launched under 2 years ago. In addition, according to my source, over 70% or 560,000 of their registered users are monthly active users (MAUs) meaning that the level of engagement is actually quite high. The average user spends over Kes. 500.00 per month on their bets so if you do the numbers, SportPesa could be making over Kes. 300 million per month in gross revenues! Indeed, the SportPesa SimilarWeb statistics as below validate how much SportPesa has been blowing up:
According to SimilarWeb, SportPesa was the 24th most popular website in Kenya in April 2015. In addition, they had an estimated 700,000 visits and the time spent on their website is close to an astonishing 19 minutes with each user looking at approximately 9 pages per visit with a relatively low bounce rate of almost 20%. They are not just coining it, they are quite literally winning it too!
Given their obvious level of success, one would imagine that SportPesa is having the online sports betting space in Kenya all to themselves? Not quite so. Others like Royal Kenya Bets and EliteBet Kenya are also operating in this nascent but fast growing market.
SportPesa and their competitors are ALL using the incredible popularity of mobile money in Kenya as their primary channel for their customers to fund their proprietary mobile wallets to place bets, as well as to receive their winnings. This means fast turnaround times and essentially instant gratification. The service also works via SMS so this means feature phone users and smart phone users can equally use SportPesa.
Going forward, what remains to be seen is whether SportPesa will be able to maintain their lead or whether other local and international players could setup equally impressive competing services in Kenya as the online sports betting opportunity scales up.
One thing is certain though – the convergence of sports obsessed Kenyans in the world’s leading mobile money country and a massive number of mobile subscribers means that the only way is up for online sports betting services like SportPesa in Kenya.