Sports Betting Canada: Attracting Women Bettors will be Difference-Maker for Operators

Sports Betting Canada: Attracting Women Bettors will be Difference-Maker for Operators

By Mark Keast

In September, PROLINE+, the only legal online sportsbook in Ontario, released the findings of a survey of 1,000 Ontario-based sports bettors.

They were asked about their views on online betting, the advancement of legal single-event sports betting Canada and their opinions on betting on sports in general.

RELATED: Opinion: Canadian sportsbooks primed for the Ontario market

The survey revealed a potentially untapped revenue source for operators — women sports bettors. Those operators include the existing PROLINE+ and private ones — like DraftKings Ontario Sportsbook — working through applications for licensing with the province’s regulatory body for what will potentially be a billion-dollar market in the province.

A growing number of women, according to the survey, are getting into the sports betting Canada game – women make up one-third of sports bettors in the province. An OLG spokesperson pointed to the great momentum for single-event betting in women’s sports — women’s Olympic soccer gold for Canada and a spirited run by Montreal’s Leylah Fernandez to the final at the U.S. Open tennis tournament, both this past summer, as examples.

“There are ways to engage women that is meaningful that allows them to fully participate but in manner that is comfortable for them.”


'An Oversight Not to Consider Women’

Amanda Brewer, country manager (Canada) for Kindred Group, and an adviser to the Canadian Gaming Association, says she’s had several discussions on the topic in these early days of a regulated industry. Kindred is one of the world’s leading online gambling operators with business across the U.S., Australia and Europe.

“It would be an oversight not to consider women as a viable customer for sport and event wagering and I think there are a few ways to approach it,” she said. “First, by demystifying how bets are placed and providing information that is easy to understand so that informed decisions can be made.

“Second, by creating content that is geared more toward events, such as offering a series of prop bets tied into televised award ceremonies such as the Academy Awards. This isn’t about creating an app that is pink and sparkly and full of rainbows and unicorns, but rather making it easy to understand how to bet on sports alongside fun and making it entertaining to have prop bets on popular television shows."

One-Third of US Bettors are Women

In September, PROLINE+ reported a lot of wagering around the Emmys and the Ted Lasso TV series, as an example. American Gaming Association research is consistent with the Ontario survey results — one-third of sports bettors in the U.S. are women. Brewer said this will be an obvious priority for her in her role with Kindred, early in the game.

“This is only my third week, but because I am a woman overseeing our launch into Ontario, it’s a safe bet that I’ll be keeping my eye on opportunities to offer content that will be appealing to a wide range of women,” she said.

Ontario is looking at an early 2022 launch for Ontario online gambling and sports wagering.

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Mark Keast
Mark Keast has recently covered the sports betting industry in Canada for The Parleh, and is a long-time sportswriter and editor, most notably with the Toronto Sun.
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Mark Keast has recently covered the sports betting industry in Canada for The Parleh, and is a long-time sportswriter and editor, most notably with the Toronto Sun.
... Read More