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What is to Come for Canada Sports Betting in the New Year: Nova Scotia, Ontario, Alberta, and More

Canada Sportsbooks · Bonus Codes · Betting News · Special Update
January 5, 2022
Allie Nelson
US Sports Betting Industry Expert

Canada sports betting saw a big year in 2021 with the legalization of single-game sports betting. However, this new year could see some big developments as well. Bill C-218 legalized single-game sports wagering across the nation back in August and that has opened many doors.

To meet demand from consumers, government-owned provincial lotteries redid their platforms, both online and retail, once they were able to. They were previously offering parlay-style games when it came to sports betting before the single-game sports betting launch.

It is projected that Ontario sports betting will open its commercial sports betting market to private sports betting operators in the beginning of the year. This will give local sports wagerers a much wider variety of sports betting operators to choose from. At this time, Ontario sports betting is only available through the government-owned Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation’s PROLINE +, at least legally.

Gray market sites, or offshore betting operators, have jumped in to fill the gap during the lull before the opening of the market to commercial operators. Ontario has been a much coveted market for private operators due to its large population of around 15 million. The market is projected to earn almost a billion dollars in sports betting revenue annually.

theScore Bet, DraftKings, FanDuel, Caesars, BetMGM, BetRivers, and PointsBet are just some of the operators looking to move into the Ontario sports betting market. These operators will be seeking Ontario sports betting licenses as soon as they are able.

At this time, there are still plenty of regulatory issues that need to be figured out before the launch of Ontario’s private sports betting market. Plus, the tax rate from the Ontario government on these private operators has yet to be announced. Additionally, we do not know what the promotions will be like in the hugely competitive market from these operators. And, even the legality of opening the market is not certain, after several legal concerns were brought up from a recent report from a provincial watchdog.

How the launch of private operators in Ontario plays out is sure to affect similar launches in other provinces. Other provinces in the country are keeping an eye on this launch before deciding whether they want to open up their own private markets.

Also in 2022, the prairie province of Saskatchewan which has a population of around 1.2 million is set to see some changes in sports betting. The Saskatchewan Indian Gaming Authority (SIGA) is looking to launch a new mobile sports betting site in the new year sometime. SIGA is a non-profit organization that has a mandate to create employment as well as economic opportunities for the First Nations community.

SIGA has closed its Request for Proposals process and should be choosing a vendor early in the year. Once the winning bid has been announced, the new sports betting site should be launched within six months. This new site will be competing with the government-owned platform Sport Select in the province for Saskatchewan sports betting.

Alberta sports betting is also looking toward some new developments. Until January 31, 2021, regulators in the province will be accepting proposals from two private sports betting operators. Alberta has a population of around 4.5 million people. There are four professional sports teams in the area, the Calgary Flames, Edmonton Elks, Calgary Stampeders, and Edmonton Oilers, that have venues where the province is hoping to install sports betting kiosks by the year’s end.

Alberta sports betting has taken a more cautious approach than that of Ontario sports betting and its proposed open market. However, Alberta has retained the option to add in the future private sportsbooks.

Nova Scotia single-game sports betting could be launching this year as well. The province has yet to launch despite the legalization country-wide last year. The Nova Scotian government agenda for 2022 will be addressing sports betting rules for Nova Scotia sports betting.

Written by Allie Nelson, our US Sports Betting Industry Expert. You can learn more about our author's expertise here.