Ontario Sports Betting Regulator Shells Out Another Fine Over Promos

Written By Pat Evans on August 27, 2022 - Last Updated on September 20, 2022
Ontario sports betting

Unibet is the latest operator to be hit with a fine in Ontario sports betting.

The Registrar of the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario served Unibet with a CAD$48,000 penalty, according to an AGCO release Thursday. The AGCO fine is because Unibet allegedly posted multiple inducements with “generous welcome offers” for Ontario sports betting.

“We expect all registered operators to achieve and maintain the high standards of responsible gambling, player protection and game integrity,” AGCO CEO and Registrar Tom Mungham said in the release. “The AGCO will continue to monitor these gaming sites’ activities, and ensure they are meeting their obligations under Ontario’s Gaming Control Act and the Standards.”

Ontario sports betting fines mount

Unibet’s penalty is the fourth fine since the market launched in April. It suggests the AGCO is serious about its strict rules that limit advertising special promotional offers.

Unlike previous offenders, the AGCO release did not detail specific instances of Unibet’s violations. The release said Unibet “posted or aired” multiple inducements.

Operators can only offer bonuses through their own site or direct advertising to a consenting player. The release said the AGCO would continue to take action moving forward.

Fourth penalty for Ontario sportsbooks

Three other operators were served earlier this year for similar infractions:

Ontario sports betting maturing

The province opened its commercial sports betting and iGaming market April 4. Operators continue to enter the market, with more than two dozen live and in the pipeline.

Although there were high hopes for the market, there are doubts about how it is truly performing. Despite plenty of promises, the industry is still waiting for a report to show the details of Ontario sports betting.

Early returns from operators in earnings reports revealed little about the market. Those reports, however, did suggest previous gray market operators like Unibet were performing well because of existing user databases.

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Pat Evans

Pat Evans is a Grand Rapids, Michigan-based reporter covering sports business. Evans previously worked at Front Office Sports and the Grand Rapids Business Journal. He has authored two books: Grand Rapids Beer and Nevada Beer.

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