Trends in Gambling Markets in 2024: Global Study by Uplatform

Ivan Mostovoy

Author: Ivan Mostovoy

30 january 2024

The company provides licensed sportsbook and casino platforms. At the end of last year, it conducted an analysis of innovations in the world’s leading regions.

Gambling markets in 2024: general info

Experts of the Win Win Casino studio will talk about the research results and opinions of qualified specialists. This knowledge can help you stay competitive and make informed business decisions.


About the iGaming and Online Betting Industry

Analysts from Uplatform predict that the entertainment market will show impressive increases between 2023 and 2030. The expected CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate) will be 11.7%.

The top 5 countries in regard to GGR (Gross Gaming Revenue) are:

  • USA;
  • United Kingdom;
  • Germany;
  • France;
  • Japan.

The US remains one of the most profitable gambling markets in the world. Last year, its total income reached $63.53 billion. Such a tendency will remain relevant in the future thanks to the gradual legalisation of online casino products in many states. Currently, they are legitimate in Nevada, Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Michigan.

Nelly Melik, head of sales at Uplatform, named several indicators of the growth of the global entertainment industry.

Easing of Regulatory Rules

The main trend is the legalisation of games for money in many countries. The only exceptions are those jurisdictions where gambling is forbidden for religious reasons. But even there, the authorities are trying to create a prosperous market.

The attention of many investors is focused on Brazil. At the end of 2023, the region adopted a bill to allow digital bookmakers’ offices to operate. It is expected that this year, the local niche will be fully operational and will bring the first dividends to the owners of iGaming platforms.

Increase in the Number of Mobile Resources

According to the Uplatform study, the mobile sector’s share is expected to grow from 53% this year to 61.5% in 2026. That is why many popular developers have already started creating “light solutions''. Such content loads much faster than before and consumes less RAM.

The task of operators is to adapt their products so that they can be used on smartphones and Apple devices and attract more solvent traffic.

Web 3.0 in iGaming

It is based on blockchain and decentralised applications (dApps). The essence of the technology lies in the creation of a social entertainment environment with a huge number of new types of games and interaction options.

The spread of Web 3.0 in the global market provides:

  • high-quality data control;
  • uninterrupted communication and exchange of information between personal devices;
  • availability to launch multiplayer solutions on any platform without delays or interruptions;
  • creation of unique experiences.

Combination of Live Content and RNG Games

Availability of entertainment with live dealers is a must-have for any online casino. However, many business owners go even further and offer products with RNG elements as well.

Evolution Gaming is one of the first companies to add such content to its portfolio. The brand’s Game Show solutions provide an immersive user experience and attract a wide audience.

Skill-Based Options

These are arcades, fishing amusements and brainteasers with the following competitive advantages:

  • full transparency of the gameplay;
  • increased engagement due to the use of personal skills and bidding strategies.

The production of this content is primarily carried out by niche manufacturers, such as KA Games, JDB, Spade Games, and many others.

VR and Metaverse

Nelly Melik noted:

Having the metaverse in the virtual world will be extremely beneficial for iGaming brands that want to remain competitive.

Users enjoy an immersive and realistic playing process and spend more money on the placement of bids. Operators can also use VR advertising (interactive billboards and banners) to increase the engagement of punters.

Casino Entertainment in Latin America

Gambling solutions in Latin America

LatAm opens up huge business opportunities. With a population of more than 600 million people and high penetration of smartphones, this market is becoming strategically important.

Mr. Randall, sales manager at Uplatform, noted:

The region is quite diverse. While the industry is just gaining momentum in some countries, in others, it brings huge dividends to enterprises. The sector is dominated by the sports betting segment. Centuries-old traditions determine the unlimited love for lotteries, bingo, and keno.

How Gambling is Developing in Latin America

A statistical overview of Uplatform shows the following characteristics of the market:

  1. High profitability. According to experts, by 2027, GGR will reach $7.38 billion. Almost half of the income ($3.83 billion) will be generated by Brazil. The same indicator for Argentina and Peru will be $1.83 billion and $0.38 billion, respectively. The average annual growth rate is planned to reach 11.45%.
  2. Predominance of mobile communications. Local operators generate 76% of their revenues from applications that people download to their gadgets. These statistics demonstrate the growing dependence on personal devices. Therefore, it is important for entrepreneurs to adapt their desktop sites to receive mobile traffic quickly and safely.
  3. Active participation in sports betting. For example, in Brazil, 46.14% of the population places bids on bookmaker quotes at least once a quarter. About 34% of respondents do this regularly (2 or 3 times a month). Football remains the most popular discipline in the country. Its audience is 81%. The second place goes to basketball, with its 33% coverage.
  4. Development of eSports. The niche is in demand among the younger generation of gamblers. According to statistics, 29% of respondents regularly bet on the results of cyber competitions. The priority is Dota 2, League of Legends, and CS:GO.
  5. Popularisation of sweepstakes. In Peru, 31.3% of the residents participate in raffles. These are the National Lottery, bingo, and the local Powerball game.

One of the main reasons for the active capitalisation of entertainment for money in LatAm is the middle class’s expansion. More and more people have the financial means to gamble online. They are looking for interesting offers, and the task of operators is to satisfy the demand fully.

The growth of the iGaming vertical is contributing to the development of the labour market. New jobs with decent wages are constantly appearing in the region. These are software vendors, QA engineers, mobile application architects, web designers, and many others.

Recommendations for Businessmen

The first piece of advice is to choose the right country to work in. Regulatory rules vary depending on the jurisdictions. Each territory has its laws, verification requirements, and advertising restrictions.

It is best to start with launching an iGaming project in Colombia or Mexico. These regions have a favourable attitude toward such entertainment and issue licences without any problems.

In Brazil, the betting niche prevails, and the casino sector is in its infancy. Uruguayan legislation prohibits the placement of bids on local platforms. For this reason, many customers do it on offshore sites using a VPN.

The second tip is to personalise offers as much as possible. This includes support for local languages and currencies, provision of a wide variety of wagers, updating the product range, and other nuances that will make the audience more interested in your brand.

Asian-Pacific Region

Sam Lau, chief sales manager at Uplatform, said:

The market has been experiencing rapid growth since the outbreak of the pandemic. Such countries as China, Japan, South Korea, the Philippines, and India are expected to lead the iGaming sector in the coming years.

Navigation Through the Industry

Experts highlighted several key features of the Asia-Pacific region:

  1. High population density. Almost 60% of the world's inhabitants live here. They place 40% of global bets online and offline. Land-based casinos are concentrated in 3 metropolises—Macau, Manila, and Singapore). Digital wagering is more common in Australia, India, South Korea, Vietnam, Thailand, and the Philippines. Many gamblers resort to the services of offshore sites.
  2. Local preferences. Entertainment with a national character is extremely popular. The catalogue of solutions on each platform must include oriental-themed slots, multiplayer fishing, and games in anime style.
  3. The increased role of live content. Asia is the only region in the revenue structure in which such casinos predominate over traditional establishments. Therefore, entrepreneurs here are actively investing in IT infrastructure and professional dealer training to ensure a flawless user experience.
  4. Diverse betting line. The region is the leader in the volume of eSports wagering. The majority of players (78%) are young people aged 18–25. 64% of respondents bet only on cyber tournaments, and 24% like traditional disciplines as well. Chinese customers love football and water sports, Indians prefer cricket, and Malaysians choose badminton.

Tips for Operators

Sam Lau stated:

The Asia-Pacific market is very competitive. Project owners need to use targeted and localised advertising strategies to quickly reach and attract the attention of a wide audience.

Almost 60% of Internet traffic is attracted through affiliate networks, so it is important for entrepreneurs to use the services of partner brands. They are familiar with the culture, interests, and preferences of local gamblers.

Sam Lau also noted:

One of the main challenges for operators in Asia is to understand the complex legal environment. It is important to remain vigilant and keep up with changing laws and regulations to ensure the successful operation of their businesses.

Owners of iGaming startups should provide a variety of settlement methods:

  • Electronic wallets are the most common option in the region. The second and third places go to credit/debit cards and direct bank transfers.
  • Alternative ways include QR payments, as well as mobile and voucher transactions. Cryptocurrency settlements are rapidly gaining popularity, although there are still no unified rules that regulate them.
  • 2C2P is the most in-demand financial system in Asia. The solution guarantees fast and secure transactions without the need to use credit cards. Thai Pay is considered a leader in the instalment volume in Thailand, while WeChat Pay and UnionPay are preferable in China.

Development of Gambling in Africa

Gambling in Africa: development nuances

Maria Bashkevich, head of marketing at Uplatform, stated:

This is one of the most undervalued regions, which, nevertheless, shows stable growth. The casino industry is on the path of transformation and a smooth transition to the online space. Incomes of the population and investments in the niche are also increasing, which contributes to its rapid capitalisation.

There is no unified gambling legislation in Africa. The northern and eastern parts of the continent are occupied by Islamic countries. All kinds of entertainment for money are prohibited. Violations are heavily punished according to Sharia law, so betting is unsafe here.

However, western, central, and southern parts of Africa are jurisdictions with developing economies and liberal rules. Nigeria, Kenya, and Ghana have the highest GDP levels. Gambling is legal there, and the population’s income allows people to place bids.

Features of the Industry’s Growth

Uplatform experts highlight the following market characteristics:

  1. Stable increase in revenues. The average annual CAGR is 3.9%. The largest development indicators are demonstrated by Nigeria (6.9%), South Africa (6.1%), and Kenya (6.01%).
  2. Smooth switching to the online environment. After the pandemic, many companies diversified their activities and began to launch iGaming platforms. The impetus for this was also the active spread of smartphones. We can say that 2 out of 5 Africans use the Internet regularly. In Kenya, this figure is even higher: 85% of the population has uninterrupted access to the Web.
  3. The growth of hybrid bookmakers’ offices. The market is known for its strong sports betting vertical. It has become a cultural part of social life in many African regions and is in great demand among the locals. In the near future, the role of hybrid sportsbook businesses will increase since they cover the maximum number of disciplines.
  4. Popularity of sweepstakes. In many jurisdictions, there are national raffles with a minimum age limit (from 16 years old) or without it at all. Gamblers often place small bids with friends or family members, trying to guess who will make the most accurate prediction. Thus, in Nigeria, the National Lottery Trust Fund (NLTF) has many land-based betting shops.

Recommendations for Launching an iGaming Startup

Maria Bashkevich noted:

The African market is more complex and diverse than many people believe. Some operators mistakenly think that a single strategy will work across the continent. They plan to enter several regions at once without adapting their projects to each country.

Secrets of success in the African market:

  • insurance of a complete localisation of the gambling product;
  • compliance with legal standards for launching and scaling a platform;
  • integration of local settlement methods with mandatory support for mobile transfers and cash payments;
  • provision of effective affiliate programs with flexible bonus systems;
  • creation of a multilingual environment (imperative languages are English and French).

The leading companies in the betting market are those that cover the most famous sports leagues and focus on team competitions. These are football, basketball, volleyball, and handball. Athletics (running, ski jumping, etc.) are also very popular in Africa due to the huge number of Olympic champions in this discipline.

Casino and Sportsbook Industry in Europe

Casino and sportsbook industry: key features

This market remains the most profitable one in the world.

3 of the top 5 GGR countries, the United Kingdom, Germany, and France, are located on this continent. Malta, a prestigious offshore and recognised centre of innovation, also plays a huge role in the growth of the gambling sector.

The main advantage of Europe is that entertainment for money is legalised in all jurisdictions. At the same time, many regions are on the path of transforming their domestic casino sectors and adapting laws to common EU standards.

Casinos and bookmakers’ offices belong to sole proprietors, while the operation of lotteries is partially under the control of the state. Similar practices are observed in Romania, Estonia, Latvia, Denmark, and other popular jurisdictions.

General Market Statistics

Key features of European gambling according to Uplatform experts:

  1. Strong profitability of the industry. At the end of last year, the total GGR of the sector reached $81.1 billion. By 2026, this figure is expected to be $126.3 billion. The average annual growth rate is fixed at 7.5%. The United Kingdom is the highest-income country in the region. It brings $16 billion of GGR.
  2. The dominance of sports betting. In 2023, the vertical generated $34.5 billion, or 42.5% of revenues. Average income per user was $72.33. Football is considered the most popular discipline here. Gamblers also place bids on basketball, rugby, tennis, Formula 1, and winter sports.
  3. Playing at higher stakes. Europeans are inclined to take more risks. Forecasting tournaments and betting on championship winners are extremely in demand on the continent. The audience likes to test different strategies to achieve the best results in the long run.
  4. Popularity of live content. Top providers of such solutions, such as Ezugi, Evolution Gaming, and Vivo Gaming, started their journey in the European market. Locals are happy to bet money in real time, watch what is happening in offline casinos, and communicate with friendly croupiers.

Advice to Entrepreneurs

Europe is a highly competitive region. To attract and retain solvent traffic, operators need:

  • modern and secure software;
  • decent product range;
  • favourable quotes and starting bonuses.

An important role is played by the design of the iGaming platform, user-friendly interface, and quick response from the support service.

Casino owners currently face the tightening of the operating rules. The changes are aimed at protecting socially vulnerable individuals and combating money laundering and terrorism financing.

Innovations from most regulators are related to age limits, advertising restrictions, and the duration of game sessions. Entrepreneurs must take all these aspects into account to achieve success in the prestigious European market.

The Main Things about Global Gambling Trends

Uplatform conducted a quantitative and qualitative analysis of key changes in the industry.

The nuances that are worth remembering are the following:

  • The casino and sports betting sector is showing rapid growth. Among the latest trends are the easing of regulatory rules, the increase in the number of mobile platforms, the popularisation of skill games, as well as the use of Web 3.0, metaverse, and VR technologies.
  • Latin America has a unique diversity of offerings, legal norms, and the audience’s preferences. All types of gambling are allowed here. The priorities of local players are betting on team sports and participating in lottery draws.
  • The Asia-Pacific region is the most technologically advanced one. This is the only place where live dealer solutions are more in demand than classic RNG slots.
  • The African market is going to make a big breakthrough in the coming years. There is a sharp growth in the real incomes of the population and an active penetration of smartphones. Kenya, Ghana, Nigeria, and South Africa are the jurisdictions with the greatest potential in the iGaming sector.
  • Europe is characterised by stability and a high level of competition. This is the most profitable niche, also due to the fact that residents love playing at high stakes. The United Kingdom is the engine of the whole region. This country sets the main development trends, including legislative changes.
The Win Win Casino studio is your reliable partner in the gambling market. From us, you can order an exclusive platform. It will be adapted to the regulatory framework and the preferences of customers in different target markets.

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