Almost 1 Trillion Shillings of mobile money was spent on sports betting in Kenya during Q1

The Central Bank of Kenya released data in July which indicated that Kenyans spent in excess of 960 billion Kenyan Shillings on sports betting during the first quarter of 2018. The convenience, ease of use and growith of mobile money services for financial inclusion purposes may have led to the unintended consequence of its becoming a leading financial conduit for the sports betting industry.

With regard to the M-Pesa mobile money platform, sports betting was reported to be responsible for a substantial rise of 2016 transaction volume at Vodaphone Plc and Safaricom's CEO recently confirmed that sports betting has leaped past other sectors. A 2017 acdemic study concluded that mobile money was an enabler of sports betting in Kenya and a perception that government was more interested in maximizing related tax revenues than in adequately protecting citizens from adverse impact resulting from sports gambling.

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