Global online gambling wagers to hit US$1 trillion by 2021

According to new research, spend in the online gambling sector is reaching that of digital good and services worldwide.

Juniper Research has found that the value of online gambling wagers will soar from just over US$550 billion in 2016 to nearly US$950 billion by 2021.

Wager levels will thus approach total spend on all digital goods and services by that time, forecast to exceed US$1 trillion for the first time in 2021. The latest research, Mobile & Online Gambling: Casinos, Lotteries, Betting & VR 2016-2021, found that gambling activities were increasingly migrating to the online environment, with the majority of net growth attributable to users of mobile channels.

New digital technologies stimulating online gaming sector

It also argued that new technologies such as VR would provide a further stimulus to the online casino sector, which is expected to account for just under half of wagers by value in 2021.

The research argued that within an increasingly consolidated and maturing sector, providers had intensified their focus on securing customer loyalty.

It observed that leading players were exploring a range of options to achieve this, with Ladbrokes offering a rewards scheme and the Rank Group’s Grosvenor business providing cross-channel memberships.

User engagement

“User engagement goes a long way towards drawing in return business. Providing features such as news and media on favourite teams, as well as personalised offerings based on past betting activity, enables greater engagement and is likely to reduce churn,” said research author Lauren Foye.

Key findings

Other key findings from the report include:

  • Despite a general trend towards regulation, a number of countries (such as the Philippines) have hardened their stance in recent months and have moved towards outright prohibition.
  • Whilst a number of leading sportsbook providers, including William Hill and 888 now offer Bitcoin, Juniper believes that the cryptocurrency is unlikely to see mass-adoption, even in the gambling space.
  • The new format of VR will attract a niche clientele initially, though these participants will wager significant amounts on real world ‘casino-style’ VR gambling products.


Edited from press release by Cecilia Rehn.