On Wednesday, PointsBet announced that it will be the “Official Sports Betting Partner” of Curling Canada, the home of curling in Canada, beginning in the 2022-23 season. Curling is one of the most popular sports in Canada, so this partnership will be a boon for PointsBet to expand its market share in the state. In a country of 38 million people, more than 13 million watch curling each season – that’s a 35% share of Canada’s population that PointsBet will now have exclusive access to as the official sportsbook and online casino.
Canada Legal Sports Betting Background
The Canadian government granted provinces the right to legalize single-event sports betting and license different brands at their discretion when the Canadian Senate passed C-218 on June 22, 2021. Previously, Canadians could only place sports bets on parlays. On August 27, single-event sports betting became legal, but there are still just minimal offerings in the space. For the time being, most single-game sports betting is provided by provincial lotteries. PwC published a study stating that the Canadian sports betting market could grow to $2 billion within two years of legalization.
Curling is a Dominant Canadian Sport
Curling Canada provides over 300 broadcast and 350 repeat hours annually, in addition to related media content so that PointsBet will have access to a depth of excellent content for marketing purposes. Over 90% of curlers in the world come from Canada, according to Curling Canada, and Team Canada is ranked first place internationally in men’s, women’s, and wheelchair curling. According to a 2015 University of Waterloo study, almost 5% of the Canadian population participates in curling.
What Will the PointsBet and Curling Canada Partnership Entail?
A partnership with Curling Canada affords PointsBet exclusivity over all curling content in the country, including more than 650 hours of broadcasting. PointsBet will also become the title sponsor of Curling Canada’s Season of Champions event starting in 2022. PointsBet already has partnerships with Daily Faceoff and The Nation Network for further media integrations and advertising opportunities.
PointsBet Canada CEO Scott Vanderwell stated that the “partnership with Curling Canada will not only support community-based sports but will bring curling fans who, our research shows, are active bettors and over-index when compared to fans of other sports, an unprecedented sports betting experience.”
PointsBet is Positioning for Ontario Access
Ontario and British Columbia were the first provinces to be early adopters of expanded legal sports betting. Ontario has a population of just over 14.5 million, about 38% of Canada’s overall population. PROLINE+, run by the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp., is currently the only legal option for sports betting in Ontario. Still, it is expected to be joined by many big-name sportsbooks that have taken over the United States market.
PointsBet plans to launch sports betting in Ontario in the first quarter of 2022 and has partnered with DailyFaceoff.com and the Nation Network, Canadian sports media sites, to target specifically the hockey market in Ontario. In addition, PointsBet will be hoping to take advantage of the growing popularity of the NFL in Ontario.
PointsBet’s partnership with Curling Canada should afford it a strong market position as provinces begin to legalize and regulate single-game sports betting.