Despite the recent clampdown on online gambling, the South African online casinos list keeps on growing. Why is this happening and what does the future hold for South African gamblers? Read on to find out.

Legal obstacles

Unfortunately, online casinos are prohibited in South Africa. Despite online gambling being a huge benefit to the economy as a whole, the legislators are reluctant to legalize it.

The gambling industry is prospering in South Africa. There are legal land-based casinos and sports betting operators that pay billions of rands in taxes. With online casinos, however, the situation is different.

The authorities fear that legalizing them would make room for easier money laundering schemes and leave the families of problem gamblers impoverished. This is why they decided to make it even harder for people to gamble online.

With the new amendment bill, South Africans risk losing their money that was won in an online casino. There were instances of banks forfeiting money gained through illegal gambling.

And yet, despite this, online casinos seem to prosper.

The situation on the market

Despite what you may think about online gambling, the industry is doing exceptionally well. Even though there are no public data available that would indicate how much of a market share does South African online gambling take, we can make some estimates.

The gambling industry in South Africa is showing significant growth. The economy of the country is in a slight decline as of today, but gambling is one of the industries that keep on growing despite all the hardships.

The research by PwC showed a gross revenue of R25 billion in 2015. This figure is up to R32 billion in 2018 and is expected to rise up to R35 billion in the following years.

Statista estimates that today the global online gambling market is worth more than $50 billion. PR Newswire statistics show that by 2023 the number should grow to $74 billion. That is a 48% increase in the span of 5 years!

Newswire reports that the global gambling market should be at $525 billion by 2023. If their estimates are correct, and we can extrapolate the data to the South African market, online gambling should take nearly one-seventh of the country’s the gross gambling revenue in five years.

What is the South African online gambling share in the global gambling market? In 2018 the global gambling yield was around $480 billion. South African gambling market as a whole is worth R32 billion. That is roughly $2 billion.

This number means that the South African gambling market makes approximately 0.4% of the global one. A tiny number, but it is easy to understand, as South Africa is a rather small country and doesn’t have renown gambling hubs like Vegas.

Why is that the case?

Online gambling is a popular pastime because it is so much easier. You don’t go anywhere, you can bet lower sums, you can play whenever you are bored. The popularity of online gambling in SA is just a reflection of a larger trend.

With the number of smartphones in South Africa being one of the highest in Africa as a whole it’s no wonder why online gambling and mobile gambling, in particular, are so popular here.