There has been much talk in the media about the incredible growth of the sports betting industry in the United States, but in reality this is a global story, and one that New Zealand is very much a part of. Whilst New Zealand doesn’t garner the same amount of attention that Australia does for its online gaming industry, figures show that the number of Kiwis choosing to take part in sports betting is growing year on year.
Since 2018, more than $2 billion has been spend on legal sports betting in the USA alone. Technological advances mean that online sports betting can now take place live, whilst the match or game is in play, and sites such as sportsbettingmarkets.com enable enthusiasts to better understand the markets that they are betting within. Soccer, basketball, rugby, and cricket are the four most popular sports with New Zealand bettors, whilst it is even possible to locate betting lines for surfing events! Testament, if needed, to the popularity of sports betting in the country.
The Demographics of the Sports Betting Market
Sports betting is one of the few areas of gambling that is popular amongst people of all generations, and according to research conducted by the web portal Financialbuzz.com, sports betting is now responsible for around 70% of the global gambling revenue generated online (outstripping both lotteries and online casinos). The global sports betting market was valued at around USD 104.31 Billion in 2017 and is expected to reach approximately USD 155.49 Billion by 2024.
What is Driving the Growth?
There are two main things that are driving the growth of the sports betting market in New Zealand (and no, one of them isn’t that we’re a nation of sports lovers!) Instead the two factors are increased wealth and expansion in digital connectivity.
Economic prosperity throughout the region has led to an increased amount of disposable income which individuals historically use for leisure activities, including sports betting. When coupled with more reliable internet connection, and increased internet connectivity in the home and in convenient wireless locations (particularly through mobile) it’s easy to see why increased numbers of people are betting on their favourite sporting events whilst they’re watching them. Around 89 percent of the population in New Zealand were active internet users in 2018, a share that has remained consistent over the past few years. And, lets face it, it’s certainly a lot easier to be a devoted sports fan (and sports bettor) when you’re able to keep up with the latest in sports news where ever you are and on a weekly, daily, and even hourly basis.
It goes without saying that, like all forms of gambling, sports betting can become addictive. It’s essential to be aware of your own limitations, and to stop when the fun stops. The statistics clearly show that for many sports fans, sports and sport betting go hand in hand: but it’s important to remember that they don’t have to!