- Ontario officially launched regulated online sports betting today
- It’s the first Canadian province to launch privately-owned sportsbooks
- 25 operators have licenses to take bets in Ontario
Enjoy today, Ontario, you’ve waited long enough. Ontario sports betting welcomed the first private sportsbook operators to the province this morning.
The likes of Caesars Sportsbook Canada are now allowed to finally begin taking single-game online sports bets. While single-game retail sports betting has been allowed in the country since August 2021, this is the first time regulated, private online sportsbooks have been able to accept single-game bets.
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Ontario has always been the most desirable province to allow single-game online sports betting. It’s the highest populated province in Canada, with 13.4 million residents according to the 2016 Canadian Census, and was always expected to be the focus for sportsbook companies to kick off regulated online sports betting in the country.
Ontario Sports Betting Market Features Big Names
The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario oversees single-game sports betting in the province and has so far approved 27 operators for iGaming licenses.
While not all iGaming operators on this list will be live for day one, the list of licensed platforms is as follows:
- Caesars Sportsbook
- World Series of Poker
- Ontario Lottery and Gaming
- Royal Panda
- Dream Vegas
- Gate 777
- Hello Casino
- Jackpot Village
- 888 Sport
Notably absent from the list is DraftKings Canada, which was expected to receive an operators license. Despite not yet being awarded a license, DraftKings will likely receive permission to operate in Ontario at some point in the near future.
Provincial lotteries have been offering single-game online sports betting since late 2021. The Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (OLG), the Atlantic Lottery Corporation (ALC), and the British Columbia Lottery Corporation (BCLC) have all launched their own online sports betting services.
However, these lottery online sports betting books typically don’t offer the same odds or spreads as private sportsbooks.
Daily Fantasy Sports Takes a Hit in Ontario
However, the daily fantasy sports (DFS) market has taken a big hit leading up to the regulated online sports betting launch, as DraftKings and FanDuel both pulled their DFS offerings from the province.
Both companies officially pulled their DFS offerings on April 1 from Ontario after the province included DFS in their sports betting bill, which legally requires Ontario DFS players to only compete against others located in the province. It also requires operators to pay $100,000 in licensing fees every year and 20% of their DFS revenue to the Ontario government.
These rules can be changed in the future through an amendment to the legal framework of the province’s sports betting rules and regulations, but no such plans have been mentioned.
Ontario Sports Betting Single-Game Bill History
Canada made sports betting history in June 2021 when the Senate of Canada approved Bill C-218 by a vote of 57-20 with five abstentions without amendment at third reading. This bill allowed each Canadian province to regulate and legalize single-game sports betting on its own. This is similar to the 2018 process in the United States when the Supreme Court overturned the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act prohibiting states from authorizing sports betting.
The Private Member’s bill, sponsored by Saskatoon-Grasswood Conservative MP Kevin Waugh, amended the Canadian Criminal Code to remove language that required sports bets to be placed across multiple events.
Prior to the passage of this bill, parlay bets were the only legal form of sports betting in the country.
Each province was given the authority to develop its own sports betting rules and regulations for single-game events.
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