Kindred has become the latest operator to secure an Ontario sports betting license, pledging to launch its Unibet brand when the market goes live on April 4.
Kindred said it would roll out both a sports betting and iGaming product into the new Canadian market.
Seventeen operators have secured an Ontario sports betting license with just a few days until launch.
First step in Canada
Kindred said the launch marked its “first step in Canada” as well as its seventh North American license.
“This is an exciting day and a significant milestone for both Kindred and Unibet,” said Amanda Brewer, Canada country manager for Kindred.
“We are proud to have received permission to launch in Ontario on the first day the market opens and look forward to building long-term relationships with our customers and partners. The iGaming market in Ontario is expected to be one of the largest in North America, which makes it a truly interesting proposition for Kindred.”
The operator may bring some customers over from its previous gray-market activity.
However, the Stockholm-listed firm has found North America to be tough sledding to date.
Kindred recently pulled back its investment in the US, saying the market was oversaturated. CEO Henrik Tjärnström said the company would wait for acquisition costs to normalize before making another push.
“What we did in the UK, coming relatively late to market, gives us confidence we can do the same in the US,” Tjärnström said.
Kindred has US revenues of $8.1 million in Q4 2021. That was down 21% year-on-year as the company dialed back spending.
Battle for Ontario sports betting customers
The operator will likely find similarly hot competition in Canada sports betting however. Established gray-market operators like bet365 will battle with US giants like FanDuel and BetMGM.
Local brand TheScore is already pre-registering customers and planning launch parties.
On the technology side, Kindred’s long-time sportsbook provider Kambi recently secured an Ontario sports betting supplier license.