Three weeks in, the Ontario sports betting market appears to be thriving, and the share of downloads since the launch show being a Canadian brand based in Toronto has its benefits.
Among licensed brands in Ontario, app data from Barclays showed that theScore Bet had 24% of downloads in the first 10 days since Ontario launched on April 4. It was followed by bet365 (24%), FanDuel (20%) and BetMGM 11%.
Two of the bigger brands expected in the market — DraftKings Sportsbook Ontario and BetRegal — have yet to launch in the fully regulated space.
The data from Barclays is similar to what Morgan Stanley saw during the first few weeks of the market. The investment group, in a note to investors last week, said theScore Bet led the way with 35% of overall downloads. It has also been noted that app downloads do not equate to customer spending.
TheScore already is a known commodity because it is Canada’s top digital sports information outlet and has since launched the Ontario sports betting app. Its parent company, Score Media and Gaming Inc., is based in Toronto. Penn National Gaming completed a $2 billion deal for Score Media in October.
The Ontario online casino and sports betting markets went live on April 4.
While it was expected that NHL betting would dominate in Ontario, data from FanDuel Sportsbook Ontario and PROLINE showed that NBA betting was most popular among bettors in Canada now that the NBA Playoffs are going on. The Toronto Raptors trail the Philadelphia 76ers in their series, 3-2, with Game 6 in Toronto on Thursday.
Looking ahead to next week, the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs begin on Monday. The Toronto Maple Leafs are trying become the first Canadian team to win the Stanley Cup since 1993.
Who is Live for Ontario iGaming?
In addition to theScoreBet, there are 12 operators registered (representing 21 brands) with the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario and have signed an operating agreement with iGaming Ontario, according to iGaming Ontario website:
- VHL Ontario Limited (888casino.ca, 888poker.ca, 888sport.ca)
- Hillside, International Sports (on.Bet365.ca)
- BetMGM Canada Inc. (Casino.on.BetMGM.ca, Poker.on.BetMGM.ca, Sports.on.BetMGM.ca)
- PointsBet Canada Operations 1 (PointsBet.ca)
- Rush Street Interactive Canada, ULC (BetRivers.ca)
- American Wagering Inc. (Sportsbook.Caesars.com)
- FanDuel Canada ULC (FanDuel.com/Canada)
- LeoVegas Gaming PLC (LeoVegas.com, RoyalPanda.com)
- Rivalry Ontario Corp. (Rivalry.com)
- Unibet ON Inc. (on.Unibet.ca)
- Coolbear Ontario Limited (Coolbet.ca)
Some Waiting on Operating Agreements
In addition to the 13 operators that have registered with AGCO and have executed iGaming Ontario operating agreements, here are the other internet gaming brands approved by the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario — as of April 26 — according to the AGCO website. The latest, Bunchberry Limited (ComeOn) was added April 21.
- Ontario Lottery & Gaming Corp.
- Dream Vegas
- Gate 777
- Hello Casino
- Jackpot Village
Growth Industry for Ontario
As more sportsbooks and iGaming operators go live in Ontario, including DraftKings and BetRegal, along with the start of the CFL season in June, Ontario’s market should continue to grow.
Why have all eyes been on Ontario since launching on April 4? If Ontario was a U.S. state, it would be the fifth-largest by population and the second-largest with legal sports betting (after New York). New York has been putting up record-breaking numbers since its mobile sports betting market launched in January. And it has just eight operators currently live.
Ontario already has more sportsbooks live and it also has online casino, which has not been legalized in New York. So you can see why the early numbers — and a look ahead to the future — have Ontario stakeholders so optimistic.