SportPesa commits to Kenya despite reports of exit

| By contenteditor
SportPesa has said it has no plans to withdraw from the Kenyan market, despite reports suggesting that the online gaming firm could exit the country in response to a sharp increase in the gambling tax rate.

SportPesa has said it has no plans to withdraw from the Kenyan market, despite reports suggesting that the online gaming firm could exit the country in response to a sharp increase in the gambling tax rate.

Last month, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta signed off on a new 35% tax on gross profit from gambling activities in the country – a significant increase on the amount operators had been paying.

SportPesa has pulled all of its sports sponsorship deals in Kenya in response to the increase, but comments from SportPesa Global chief executive Gerasim Nikolov suggested that the company could exit the market altogether.

Speaking in a media briefing, Nikolov, said the company was looking at options to relocate its base to Tanzania or the UK, which could in turn lead to job losses in Kenya, adding that “no firm can survive today if a 35% tax was put on its turnover.”

However, Nikolov has now moved to clarify his comments, saying that they were taken out of context and SportPesa will remain active in Kenya.

In a brief statement on the official SportPesa Twitter page, the company said: “Our CEO was simply trying to demonstrate that no business can survive such heavy taxation on revenue and not profit.

“SportPesa was the first and remains the best gaming brand in Kenya and SportPesa will be the last gaming brand to ever close in Kenya for whatever reason.”

Related articles: SportPesa set to exit Kenya after tax hike
SportPesa drops Kenyan sports sponsorship after tax rise
Kenyan president signs off on 35% gambling tax law

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