10.06.2019

What You Need to Know Before Starting an iGaming Business in Latin America

There is no doubt that the United States gambling market has some of the most potential of any new regulated market, and it’s no surprise that countless companies are rushing to earn their slice of the pie. However, there could be just as much action further south, in Latin America.

In fact, if estimates are to be believed, Latin America could be more lucrative than all regulated gambling markets in the United States for the foreseeable future. There are 33 countries in Latin America, and while countries like Mexico compose the largest share of online and offline gamblers, countries like Colombia are also getting in on the action.

In this guide we’ll look at some of the things to take into consideration when entering the Latin America iGaming sector.

Soccer is King

Soccer, as it’s known in the Americas, isn’t that big in the United States and it’s way down the pecking order when it comes to sports betting. In Latin America, however, it’s a different story. They’re even more obsessed with this sport than Europeans.

A sports betting operators needs to keep this in mind and ensure they offer a wide selection of soccer markets, covering all major European leagues as well as the biggest leagues in Latin America. Fans in this region love their national teams and their domestic leagues and cups, but they also love to follow their homegrown players all over the world, from La Liga to the English Premier League.

Some Sports are Non-Existent

Latin America is diverse, but there are a few key truths that apply across the board. One of these is the fact that some sports, including those that have a huge following in Europe, are practically non-existent here.

Rugby, for instance, has a growing following in Argentina and Brazil, but you’ll struggle to find fans elsewhere. Cricket is also practically unheard of, even though it’s technically the second most popular sport in the world, and eSports are growing at a slower rate here than they are elsewhere.

In place of these, a good Latin American sportsbook should have plenty of coverage of mixed martial arts, judo, volleyball, and other forms of soccer, such as beach soccer and Futsal.

The Wealth Disparity is Huge

Poverty in some Latin American countries is entirely different to poverty in countries like the UK. UK bookmakers, bingo halls and even casinos have been known to flourish in relatively poor areas, especially during recessions. The same isn’t true for most of Latin America though, where poverty means barely being able to afford a home or food, let alone a sports bet or a buy-in.

An iGaming site would need to find a way of targeting their services to the more affluent, or focusing on small-stakes bets.

Tourism is Huge

Latin American countries like Mexico attract a huge number of tourists looking to do things they might not necessarily be able to do in their own country. This is especially true of US tourists, many of which look to Latin America as offline and online gambling havens.

An iGaming operation established in a country like Mexico is likely going to receive just as much custom from travelling US players as it does from locals. As a result, it’s important for these sites to be available in English as well as Spanish and Portuguese. The same is true of countries like Brazil and Argentina.

Conclusion

Latin America is huge and it has limitless potential for companies in the iGaming sector. Countries like Mexico and Brazil already have established industries, while the likes of Colombia have just started to embrace the potential of this sector. It’s only going to get bigger, better and more lucrative in the years to come, and that’s good news all round.

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