Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Ontario: $10 billion in wagers in first three months of online sports betting

Attitudes towards gambling, whether it is on sports, casino games or lotteries, have changed significantly over the past 20 years or so. Today, placing a bet has been largely destigmatized, and is a pastime that is enjoyed by billions across the globe. 

A large part of that normalization is due to more information about gambling activities being more widely available, thanks to the wonders of the internet. This has also made gambling more accessible to those who do not live near a casino or betting shop.

These shifts have also inspired governments to change their policies and open up new regulated gambling markets. The result is yet more people exploring the world of online gambling and a multi billion dollar industry that is growing at a CAGR of almost 12 percent. But which markets are the biggest cash generators for this thriving industry? Some of the following might come as a surprise. 


The US Supreme Court’s 2018 ruling that states could legally regulate sports betting – and thereby collect tax dollars – had a profound effect on the industry. Americans love their sport, and placing a small moneyline bet is commonplace among fans, just to have a personal stake in the game and feel more of a connection. Online casino gaming is also big business in the USA. Here, the regulatory environment is more complex due to long-standing agreements with tribal groups. However, as the https://www.gamblingsites.org/ homepage shows, there are dozens of offshore casinos that are available to casino gamers across the US.


Although many of the big players have relocated overseas for tax reasons, the UK is still seen as the traditional gambling homeland. This is especially the case for sports betting, with brands like Coral, William Hill and Paddy Power that now have a global footprint. The British love a wager, and have a more relaxed attitude to gambling than many countries, in particular the US. 


Italy consistently leads the market in mainland Europe in terms of gross gambling revenue (GGR). Over the past couple of years, the contribution of online gambling to this figure has increased dramatically, with  from 2020 to 2021. Partly this was due to external factors, specifically the restrictions in place at land-based casinos – Italy was hit particularly hard by the events of 2020/21. However, projections for 2022 strongly indicate that the Italian love affair with online gambling is a permanent one.


Canada represents an interesting case. This time last year, online gambling was officially prohibited in Canada. Yet that didn’t stop Canadians spending around $4 billion every year at offshore casino sites. Earlier this year, Ontario launched its new iGaming ecosystem, and in six months, it has issued two dozen licenses. In its first quarter of operation, Ontario’s new iGaming industry saw punters stake more than $10 billion in wagers. Gross gaming revenue of $1.6 billion is estimated for 2022, and it is predicted to increase 100 percent next year. With that sort of performance, it is surely only a matter of time before other Canadian provinces follow.


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