Another prominent sports betting brand has set its sights on Ontario’s lucrative iGaming market. Most recently, Costa Rica-based operator 5Dimes revealed that it has submitted its application to become a licensed entity in Canada’s most populous province. Due to its application, the owner of several offshore betting sites has now suspended its offerings across Europe.
Last April, Ontario became the first Canadian jurisdiction to kick off a regulated online gambling market for third-party operators from the industry. It is governed by the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario and its subsidiary iGaming Ontario. However, this market is separate from Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation’s online gambling business.
Pursuing Opportunities in Canada
Recently, 5Dimes announced its interest in becoming a licensed operator in Ontario. In an email, the company said once it is online in the province, it will offer thrilling bonuses and promotions as a way of celebrating the launch. It said it was committed to providing players with an exceptional gaming experience, as the operator takes off in its Ontario adventure.
Its interest in the Canadian private market for iGaming arrives after the company suspended work in the U.S. in September 2020. The operator ceased U.S. activities after it agreed to a more than US$46.8 million settlement with the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. The settlement was in relation to an investigation into the company’s sports betting operations in Costa Rica.
It was reported that the company allegedly allowed bettors in the U.S. to put wagers illegally. The investigation into the operator discovered that it has reportedly allowed such wagering from at least 2011 until 2018. On top of that, the end of its European operations came after the death of owner Laura Varela’s husband and 5Dimes founder William Creighton in 2018.
With its potential entry into Ontario, the operator will be looking to capitalize on the immense market wagering volume. For the first 12 months of operations, the province reported it handled CA$35.6 billion in wagers which brought CA$1.4 billion in revenue. According to the regulator, active player accounts had an average of CA$70 spent every month in that period.
Changing Ads Regulations
But the success of Ontario’s iGaming market has brought in some concerns among local parents and experts, as there has been a ton of betting marketing in the province. That is why AGCO has proposed banning sports starts from participating in such commercials and advertisements. However, the item is not yet approved or in play.
In a previous statement, the AGCO said it monitors and identifies possible risks, and if necessary, it updates the Registrar’s Standards to mitigate them. The regulator has now identified advertising and marketing approaches that strongly appeal to individuals who are under the legal gaming age via celebrities or athletes. It said concerns about the potential impact on the underage demographic remain high.
Source: Byers, Justin “5Dimes Seeking Online Sports Betting License in Ontario” Covers, May 30, 2023