PointsBet sets sights on Alberta

PointsBet Canada is looking to Alberta’s Calgary-Edmonton Corridor as a “possible expansion point” as the company casts its eyes away from Ontario.

The company has already secured Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) registration to operate as a licensed iGaming operator in the province’s wide regulated market.

Now, it is exploring similar opportunities in Alberta.

In a press release, PointsBet Canada highlighted that the province’s “avid sports fan base and business-friendly environment” are among the reasons it is exploring operations within its borders.

CEO Scott Vanderwel said that the company believes “Alberta has the talent and highly-skilled workforce that can help us be at the forefront of iGaming in Canada”.

“In addition to the economic growth created by an iGaming workforce, Alberta has an even greater economic opportunity should it choose to pursue a regulated and competitive iGaming market in the province,” added Vanderwel. “Doing so would create a level-playing field in a responsible and licensed gaming market for Alberta’s sports fans.”

Unlike Ontario, which is set to issue licenses to numerous operators and create a deeply competitive open regulated market, Alberta is expected to walk a more conservative line. On the sports betting side, it is looking for just two initial proponents.

PointsBet has been ramping up its Canadian operations since the early summer of 2021 and boasts partnerships with organizations such as the NHL Alumni Association, Daily Faceoff and The Nation Network, and Curling Canada.

Jay Downton, co-founder of The Nation Network, added that “as a proud Edmontonian, I am excited to see [PointsBet] looking to Alberta to expand their operations.”

PointsBet emphasized that the fact it owns and controls its own technology instead of outsourcing core functions to third parties, operating a hands-on and in-house approach, will create opportunities for operations, investment, and jobs to either open or remain in Alberta.

The company has a Memorandum of Understanding with Invest Alberta, a corporation dedicated to investment attraction and providing high-end support to companies, investors, and major new projects in the province.

That organization’s CEO, Rick Christiaanse, noted that the MOU “will support the company on its investment journey as PointsBet looks to Alberta as a potential destination for high-impact investment.

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