- Starts African expansion with opening of new office and online service in Kenya
- Kenya chosen due to mature gambling market and sport betting savvy public
Philippines headquartered sports betting operator Dafabet has opened a new office hub in Nairobi, which will serve as a base for its African expansion programme.
The opening of the new hub location coincided with the live launch of Defabet’s Kenyan website (dafabet.co.ke) and mobile betting app. This new Kenyan betting service offers local customers the opportunity to bet on worldwide sports events, including greyhound racing in the UK.
Sports savvy locals
Dafabet has indicated that it believes Kenya represents the best starting point to create a presence in Africa. This decision is based largely on the fact that Kenya already has a mature gambling marketplace. According to Louis Watts, the Retail and Regional Operations Director for Dafabet Kenya, local people are “sport betting savvy”.
Watts also told local media that putting down roots in Kenya was a necessary starting point for the company’s plan to create new operations in other African countries.
Local comedy links to UK soccer teams
Dafabet first flagged its interest in the Kenyan sports betting market in January when the company registered @DafabetKenya as a Twitter handle. It used promotional videos to ignite interest in the country, including one in which local comedy troupe, Propesa are seen wearing soccer kits from UK teams that are sponsored by Dafabet – Celtic and Sunderland.
Kenya’s betting regulation queries
Other operators currently established in Kenya include local company Sportpesa, plus Betin, Betway and Elitebet.
Kenya is currently reviewing its national gambling framework, after betting operators there complained about being made to work under unclear conditions and policies, and in some cases having to pay inappropriately high taxes.
The Kenyan National Assembly has expressed a commitment to improving the gambling and betting regulations. However, the Betting, Lotteries and Gaming (Amendment) Bill 2016 is viewed by industry pundits as a way of charging high tax rates, restricting gambling and curbing foreign ownership of gambling businesses.