A New Ontario Sports Betting Partnership is Announced Between MLB and OLG’s ProLine+
US Sports Betting Industry Expert
Ontario sports betting is shaping up to be quite the coveted market for many sports betting operators. While the exact numbers of how the market is doing in the province have not yet been released, estimates have been fairly high. So, it should come as no surprise that many professional sports organizations are trying to get a piece of the action.
Enter, Major League Baseball. The MLB has now found its first sports betting partner in the Ontario market.
Ontario sports betting first launched in August 2021 with a provincial lottery run sportsbook. This came at the same time that the Canadian Criminal Code was changed to allow for single event sports betting, with each province having the ability to legalize the practice. In April 2022, the Ontario sports betting market became the first province in Canada to expand to allow for commercial sports betting operators to legally launch.
This past Thursday, the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp. and Major League Baseball announced their partnership. As a result, the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp.’s provincial lottery run sportsbook, ProLine+ is now the first official sportsbook partner of the MLB in the Ontario sports betting market.
The EVP of Business Development of the MLB, Kenny Gersh, discussed the company’s strategy to form partnerships that will allow them to expand their fanbase. He indicated that this partnership was part of that strategy and the company’s excitement about the deal and what it will mean for the MLB.
Through this deal, the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp. will now have distribution rights when it comes to MLB logos. OLG will also receive cross-promotion through the MLB’s social and digital channels. In addition, throughout the baseball season we will see the introduction of free-to-play digital games as part of the partnership too.
This is not the first professional sports league partnership for the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp. Already in 2022, we have seen similar partnerships announced between OLG and both the National Hockey League and the National Football League.
The Chief Digital and Strategy Officer for the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp., Dave Pridmore, discussed how a partnership with the MLB gives OLG a great opportunity to provide exclusive experiences for their baseball fans. He hopes to give fans a more intimate and interactive experience with the sports they love.
Other partnerships in the baseball world that have come about in the Canadian sports betting market have popped up as well. Earlier this year, the Toronto Blue Jays announced their partnership with theScore Bet in the Canadian market. The CEO of theScore, John Levy, stated that he felt such a partnership would open up the door for opportunities for marketing as well as to help engage fans.
The deal between the Toronto Blue Jays and theScore Bet also includes a the-Score-branded sports bar and restaurant that will be located at the Blue Jays’ stadium situated in Toronto’s downtown.
According to iGaming Ontario, as of this writing, there are twenty seven commercial gaming sites that have launched in the Ontario sports betting market. While no report has been released on the revenue that these operators have earned, according to regulators such a report should be forthcoming. However, BetMGM did recently indicate that the operator has done quite well in the province.
Written by Allie Nelson, our US Sports Betting Industry Expert.