Operators Anticipate Sports Betting Gold Rush in Canada

    • The Senate of Canada passed a bill on Tuesday permitting each province to approve single-game wagering.
    • Online gaming in Canada could generate between $4.3 billion and $5.4 billion in annual gross gaming revenue, estimates theScore.

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“Ontario, it’s happening. See you soon.”

That’s the new billboard by theScore in Toronto celebrating the looming legalization of sports betting in Canada. 

The Senate of Canada passed a bill on Tuesday permitting each province to approve single-game wagering. Prior to the 57-20 vote, Canadian citizens were only allowed to bet on sports through multi-leg parlays. 

With sports betting online by the fall, companies like theScore — which operates the country’s leading mobile sports media app — and DraftKings are expecting the biggest gold rush since the Klondike.

Canada boasts a population of nearly 38 million, as well as seven NHL teams, the NBA’s Toronto Raptors, MLB’s Toronto Blue Jays, and the Canadian Football League

“Fired-up is an understatement for how awesome an opportunity this now is in Ontario,” said Aubrey Levy, vice president of content and marketing for Toronto-based Score Media and Gaming. 

  • Online gaming in Canada could generate between $4.3 billion and $5.4 billion in annual gross gaming revenue, estimates theScore.
  • Ontario, the country’s most populous province, is viewed as the “crown jewel” of a legalized Canadian sports betting market. The province alone could generate up to $2.1 billion in revenue. 
  • With a population of 14.7 million, Ontario would rank as the fifth-largest U.S. state, behind California, Texas, Florida, and New York but ahead of Pennsylvania and Illinois.

Not surprisingly, the NHL generates the country’s largest betting handle, according to Levy: “Betting behavior tends to parallel media consumption. And in Canada, hockey is absolutely huge.”