We have all seen enough movies to understand that the house always wins. If you’re going to gamble, given enough time, the casino/betting house will win regardless of whatever hot streak you hit.
Official figures on how much Zimbos gamble are hard to come by, mostly because we probably don’t collect that kind of data. The Act which deals with gambling (Lotteries and Gambling Act) does not even touch on online gambling and so it’s in a grey zone legally.
As much as horse racing remains popular, sports betting has taken the country by storm. I’m not alone in being worried about this.
Many Zimbos are looking to sports betting to get them out of poverty and that’s not going to happen for 99.9% of them, regardless of how much they think they understand how the game is played.
When I saw a Moors World of Sport branch in my kumusha in Mrewa, I felt my stomach turn. They are going to suck my people dry.
SuperSport joins the game
This sports betting craze is not just a Zimbabwean phenomenon. The whole of Africa has been hit by the bug and Multichoice is looking to cash in on that.
See, Multichoice knows firsthand just how much these sports betting houses are paying to advertise their wares, competing and driving prices up.
If you watch football you know just how aggressive these sports bookers have been over the past few years. Every other ad promotes their stuff and every other football team dons a sports booker on their shirt.
Multichoice decided to get in on the action. They announced SuperSportBet, an online sports betting site aimed at being the “ultimate destination for sports fans, the betting fraternity and sports lifestyle enthusiasts.”
SuperSportBet was done in conjunction with KingMakers of Nigeria, a sports betting company for which Multichoice has 49% shareholding.
They decided to ride on the SuperSport brand which every sports fan in these parts is familiar with. I think they have a good chance to chip at the lead of the Betways of this world.
Multichoice has had its struggles in the last decade. This sports betting gig provides a new channel for serious growth. The likes of DStv will not be seeing exponential growth as they already have a significant saturation.
Sports betting is still on the rise and as more Africans go online, they will transfer their limited wealth to SuperSportBet. We have shown a willingness to participate and so these betting houses are not going to stop. SuperSportBet is the conclusive proof we needed that there will be no escape.
Says a SuperSportBet executive,
Sports betting is quickly growing to be a game-changer in the country and on the continent. SuperSportBet will, with its exciting features and its association to a rich brand like SuperSport, set itself apart in a competitive and saturated market
We can’t really tell adults not to gamble and so as long as poverty remains, the chance to get rich in one stroke will always be taken. Being addictive, we will not be able to escape gambling’s clutches, even as stories of dudes blowing their salaries on sports betting warn us.
I can’t say I approve of this industry. Again, the house always wins and so I hate that sports gambling is becoming popular. I can’t begrudge Multichoice for going into this business though. Someone is going to do it regardless.
Multichoice at least promises to promote “responsible betting.” I would argue that every other betting house promises the same but maybe being a listed company and having more to lose (DStv) than other betting houses, Multichoice could be more incentivised to actually promote responsible gambling.