DraftKings’ CEO has admitted that while the company has big plans for the Ontario market, he doesn’t expect major American players to be able to dominate the province’s gaming and betting industry in the early stages.
Since the repeal of PASPA in 2018, the likes of DraftKings, BetMGM, FanDuel, and others have emerged as the leaders in the U.S. sports betting market. When Ontario opens for regulated business on April 4, the fifth-largest jurisdiction in North America by population will be the second-largest sports betting market on the continent.
DraftKings’ Jason Robins said that while the company is looking forward to launching in Ontario and competing in that market, pending licensure and required approvals, it is not counting on the province to lead its balance sheet.
Robins noted that while regulated sportsbooks typically started from the same position in the U.S., much of the Ontario sports betting market may already be signed up before DraftKings and its major U.S. competitors can take their first bet. Because of Ontario’s unique approach to private iGaming in a bid to mitigate the existing grey market, the likes of DraftKings will be competing with many brands that have actually been operating in the province for years, in some way or another.
“Definitely, it’s different. There’s been a grey market there for many years,” Robins said, per Play Canada. “We are not projecting the same level of market share in Ontario or in Canada in general that we are projecting in the U.S. just because we don’t have that early mover advantage.”
“But it should be a good market,” he added. “It has iGaming, it has sports betting, and we already have a decently sized user base of DFS customers there. So we’re pretty excited about Ontario.”