You’ve Gotta Know when to Hold’em – Planning a Successful iGaming Launch

Deloitte’s recent report on the iGaming industry in Canada “Bettor Perspectives” states that “the legalization of single-sports betting is one of the most significant developments the Canadian sports, entertainment and gaming sectors have seen in years”. While the jury is still out, we do know that there has been an overwhelming interest from IAB Canada stakeholders in this newly emerging – and soon to be regulated – vertical. And while we’re all clearly excited about the potential revenue opportunities, we need to also be smart in how we move forward. 

When iGaming was made legal in the UK, operators went wild with their advertising budgets which quickly drew the ire of anti-gaming groups who successfully launched complaints urging the government to forcibly reduce the number of ads the industry places on TV, radio and online. This backlash led to a full overhaul of the current gambling regulation in that country which will surely diminish an operator’s ability to promote their offering. Our local regulators have most likely read this cautionary tale as they are carefully drafting operator agreements that outline specific requirements regarding the communications and ads they put out there. You can find the full details on this and more here. 

From our side of the poker table, we are seeing some forward-thinking activity on self-regulatory best practices. We would not be surprised to see broadcasters self-impose dayparting and volume limits gaming ads. Meanwhile, IAB Canada publisher members are carefully thinking through how to work with officially iGaming registered operators (list coming soon) and assessing the potential impact of missing the mark on over-saturating their properties with gaming ads.  

One thing is clear, all eyes are on this Ontario-led experiment and all stakeholders are willing to secure a sustainable and responsible market for iGaming. IAB Canada remains in close contact with our thinktv partners while assembling an iGaming working group for our members to contribute to open discussions about regulatory requirements and the development of best practices, helpful frameworks, and other topics specific to the digital media channel as we prepare for the April 4th launch. 

For more information on how to get involved reach out to