By Okechukwu Chukwuebuka
Sure, the Nigerian Movie industry might have been neglected by various governments, but when you compare this with the potential market, you will soon see that there is a huge opportunity for growth and there are also ways for people to take advantage of that.
Estimates show that the land-based casino revenue that comes from the Nigerian market could easily exceed £70m. The growth rate might even exceed that in South Africa and even Kenya as well. A lot of people wonder how real this is because if you don’t include slot operations then you might be quite a way off the mark. Where the Nigerian sector is lacking really does lie in sports betting and the lottery sectors. When you look at any netbet casino, you will see that the online versions are going full-steam ahead and that more and more people are using them by the day. In the 1970’s, land casinos were way more popular but conflicting governing laws which lacked any type of clear policy directives seemed to lead to the demise of the industry.
The biggest investments look to have come from various companies and some of them include the Sun Market and even other South African market companies that have four properties. The problem is that there aren’t enough to warrant projections like this. The Nigeria market might well surpass Kenya in the next couple of years, but it might not surpass Africa in the coming future. Nigeria does also offer the best opportunities as well. A lot of this comes down to the fact that the population is un-serviced. Take a look at the Lagos state for example. This is the fifth biggest economy in Africa, and it has between 8 and 10 casinos that serve the residents, which total over 21 million. When you compare this to Nairobi, you will soon see that this has a population of around 4 million people and that there are also 60 casinos.
When you look at development, you will soon see that the Nigerian market really does need a different approach. It may be that more mid-sized integrations need to be explored and that things need to be marketed to a much younger population. Either way, the entertainment industry is certainly growing, and it’s projected to become the biggest and fastest-growing industry in the world when you look at the next 3-5 years.
Another action that will really help the casino industry is the removal of the central bank. This bans any kind of financial institution from being able to lend cash to businesses who operate in the gambling industry. If this was to change then the industry really would see a significant level of improvement and this would benefit everyone involved. If it doesn’t change though, then chances are things are going to improve either way, just not at a rate which is as fast or as impactful, so this is an important point to consider.
Okechukwu Writes from Ikorodu