Mercado de apostas online cresceu 734% desde de 2021, aponta pesquisa
Forte presença de casas de apostas no futebol brasileiro. Foto: Lucas Merçon / Fluminense F.C.

The online betting market in Brazil experienced an impressive growth of 734.6% between 2021 and April 2024, according to a survey by the data analysis platform Datahub.

In 2021, there were 26 companies focused on games of chance and online betting in the country. The following year, this number increased to 79, a growth of 203%. In the first four months of 2024, as many new companies were opened as in the entire year 2022.

Felipe Mesquita, account executive at Datahub, explained: “Regulation was crucial for this turnaround in the sector. With gambling aligned with the laws, it offers more security for companies and consumers, naturally boosting growth.”

Since December 2018, sports betting has been legally recognized in Brazil, but regulation of the sector only came with time. In 2023, the government signed the decree that regulates the betting market, strengthening the business environment and attracting more companies.

According to the Ministry of Finance, 134 companies expressed interest in operating in the betting market in the country at the end of 2023. This interest was also reflected internationally, with two foreign companies entering the Brazilian market in 2023 and five in 2024.

“Although modest, this increase demonstrates a growing interest in the Brazilian market, encouraged by new legislation that offers greater predictability and legal certainty”, highlighted the Datahub study.

Impact of the pandemic and technology on the betting market

The pandemic and technological advances were important factors in the sector’s growth. “The turning point happened after the pandemic, when face-to-face interactions decreased, making room for technological services. The betting sector had a significant boom,” said Felipe Mesquita, account executive at Datahub.

Jhon Macario, marketing and research analyst at Datahub, reinforces the idea that technology has democratized access to betting. “Before, betting was restricted to lottery outlets. Now, with smartphones, there is much greater accessibility,” he noted.

The consumer profile has also changed. The majority of bettors are between 22 and 36 years old, a group highly connected to the digital world. “The younger generation prefers the convenience of electronic devices and rarely thinks about traveling to place bets”, added Mesquita.

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Photo: Unsplash

Diversification of sectors and expansion opportunities

The growth of the online betting sector also impacts other sectors of the economy, such as technology, communication and sports.

André Gelfi, president of the Brazilian Institute of Responsible Gaming (IBJR) stated: “The sector generates billions of reais, generates thousands of jobs and is extremely booming, especially after the federal government’s regulation at the end of last year.”

Felipe Mesquita believes that the scenario is positive and that there is still a lot of room for new companies in the betting market. “The market has grown, is growing and should continue to grow”, he points out.

One of the areas with the greatest potential for expansion is payment methods. Founded in 2018, Pay4Fun stood out as one of the main Brazilian online payment platforms, being the first institution in the betting segment to receive authorization from the Central Bank in 2022.

Leonardo Batista, CEO of Pay4Fun, notes that irregular payment methods have always been a “headache” for the sector. “There is a lot of room to grow in quality, both in betting houses and in payment methods. Today, there are many poor quality and irregular services,” stated Batista.

For the sector’s growth to be sustainable and safe, Batista emphasizes that it is essential to distinguish that betting is a form of entertainment, not an investment. “Gaming is not extra money, it is not a guarantee of winning. Responsibility and clarity about the purpose of the sector are needed”, concludes Batista.