Gambling has seen major expansion in the USA and now Canada is following suit. April 4 was a date that players of sportsbooks and casinos in Ontario had in their diary. That was the day when private gambling companies were allowed to launch online services in the province.
The USA had long seen betting on sport severely restricted. Then a Supreme Court judge made a ruling that changed the gambling industry forever. It allowed individual states to decide whether they should or should not legalize sports betting, particularly online. Since then, there has been massive growth in the gambling industry with millions of dollars being bet on sport and casino games.
Canada has also seen major changes in the past year or so. Back in 1985 sports betting was legalized but with several restrictions being placed on the activity. Betting on a single event wasn’t possible with parlays (accumulators) only being possible. More selections mean higher odds and less chance of success.
This led many gamblers to open offshore accounts. All of which saw the Canadian gambling industry losing custom. Finally last year, a new law was passed that allowed the placing of single event bets.
Now we’re in 2022 and April is another important month for gambling in Canada. There have been sports betting in Ontario with the Proline+ sportsbook being available. However, that is run by the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp. Other sportsbooks that players can gamble on are operated outside of the country.
As the launch begins in Ontario, more changes in the gambling industry are being planned. The way in which we gamble is always changing. The next big thing is set to be the Metaverse, so get ready for more virtual and augmented reality in the future. Metaverse betting on sport (and casino games) is going to be so exciting in the years to come.
This situation has now changed with privately owned gambling companies being granted licenses to operate online sportsbooks and casinos in the province. This has been great news for companies such as PointsBet and FanDuel.
The expansion that has been seen in the American gambling industry has been great news for those and other companies. It’s been a case of waiting for states to pass the necessary laws that make legal gambling, particularly online, possible. Then the licensing applications began, the licenses get granted and the sportsbooks and online casinos open.
That’s not just good news for the gambling companies of course. Each state that changes their laws sit back and wait for the gambling tax revenue to roll in. That’s been the case in the USA and now Ontario and other provinces in Canada will be expecting the same. Why allow offshore companies to make money without any tax being received?
As the month of April began, there were 25 operators registered. All of them counting down the hours until they could open online sportsbooks and casinos in Ontario. Gamblers meanwhile were eagerly awaiting the chance to register with these new online ventures and to begin downloading the apps onto their smartphones.
The weekend before the big launch saw the new licensee operators doing all they could to promote their new online sportsbooks and casinos. The gambling industry is a highly competitive one with so many companies all trying their best to grab a good share of the market.
One of those is PointsBet Canada who were had online advertisements and videos promoting their site. They enlisted the help of the cast of the mockumentary television series ‘Trailer Park Boys.’
A spokesman for the company said that opening up in Ontario was like launching in a country. That’s why there was so much advertising by the companies because first impressions are so important. As the PointsBet Canada spokesman said, the main aim is to “be strong out of the gates.”
That’s a view shared by Richard Schwartz who is the CEO of BetRivers. They too are new to the province and heavily advertised during the Winter Olympics, an event hugely popular in Canada. Mr Schwartz commented that “we started without having any awareness” but that’s changing now.
The big question now is how much is likely to be raised by this expansion of gambling in Ontario? We don’t currently have estimates from the politicians in Ontario but that will change when their annual budget is revealed at the end of April. One source believes that the first 12 months will see revenue of $800 million in the first year.
There has been some concern about the online expansion in Ontario. Those who run land-based casinos aren’t too happy, nor are unions. They are concerned that their revenue figures may drop by $2.8 billion in the next five years and that would see thousands of jobs being lost.