Ontario opened the sports betting market for private companies on April 4. Since then, there are already some companies and brands that are pulling ahead in the race. Local sportsbooks are giving US companies a good run for their money, with theScore Bet, bet365, and FanDuel presently running neck-and-neck in the first three-or-so weeks of sports betting activity in the province.
Betting App Downloads Tell a Story
All companies have been able to command a fair bit of interest, regardless of their nationality, and banking mostly on proven consumer-focused formulas. TheScore may hail from Canada, but the company has had time to cut its teeth competing in the United States, which has cleared over 33 states and the District of Columbia for sports betting.
Barclays analysts James Rowland Clark and Vicki Stern, and their colleagues, have delivered an assessment of the fast-developing betting market in Ontario, concluding that theScore Bet, FanDuel, and bet365 are the most prominent names in the market.
Ontario’s liberal approach has been a godsend for operators. Mobile downloads have been indicative of what brands people prefer. TheScore Bet saw 35% of all total downloads in the first 10 days of activity, followed by bet365 with 27% and FanDuel with 16%.
Meanwhile, previous offshore operators that marketed to and targeted Canadian audiences have been allowed to launch without any grace or cooling-off period in the province. Bet365 used to offer its markets without a license, but since obtaining a license and launching in the province, the British private company has been outperforming much of the competition.
Even more surprising, Betway, the Super Group-owned entity, only obtained its official betting license from the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario last week but it remains one of the preferred choices for many of the bettors in the province.
Who Leads the Way in Terms of Total Market Share?
Barclays cited a study by H2 Gambling Capital, an analytics firm that habitually offers insight into the global gambling industry, which stated that Betway accounts for 28% of the online market through its Spin and Betway.
Both brands offer casino as well as sports betting products. Bet365 in the meantime accounts for 8% of the total betting handle, which would mean that offshore betting brands are still more appealing to customers, whether it’s a force of habit or an actually added value Betway has on its competitors.
There are some stragglers still. DraftKings, for one, has allowed FanDuel to go ahead and run its game while one of America’s top-three brands is patiently bidding its time. However, Barclays predicts that once DraftKings makes its debut in Ontario, things may change rapidly in favor of the betting brand, outpacing other American brands, including Rush Street Interactive, BetMGM, and FanDuel.
Meanwhile, Barclays also feels confident that Ontario will continue to build up its igaming offer, which is where most of the money is. An estimated 62% of all gross gaming revenue should be coming from igaming products. Another 27% will be supplemented by sports betting, with some room left for other verticals.
What this means is that any entity that actually relies on both sports betting and casino to conduct business is in a prime position to capitalize on its product in Ontario.