iGaming could be on way up in Canada

NetEnt Deal receives approval from British Columbia's Gaming Policy and Enforcement Branch

The Canadian online casino scene welcomed a new player to the market in May after British Columbia’s Gaming Policy and Enforcement Branch (GPEB) approved software supplier NetEnt.

With iGaming as an industry needing a boost in Canada, the GPEB has moved to enhance its local industry by licensing one of the leading design studios in the world. According to an official announcement by the company, as well as subsequent news reports, NetEnt has satisfied the regulatory conditions of the Canadian regulator and will now offer its services to the British Columbia Lottery Corporation (BCLC).

“I am very pleased that we have reached yet another important milestone in our expansion on regulated markets. We are the online casino supplier with the largest presence on regulated markets in terms of number of licenses and certifications that we hold, and entering the province of British Columbia in Canada is another important step for us,” explained NetEnt CEO, Per Eriksson.

NetEnt on the international stage

As well as being a notable deal for NetEnt, the approval is another sign that Canada’s iGaming scene is looking to build a robust future. NetEnt is currently supplying games to many of the top online casinos both in Canada and the rest of the world. To ensure player safety, it works with local regulators and operators in unison whenever necessary.

Casino chips

An example of this is the partnership it has with Guts Casino. Guts.com is an online casino with slot games and part of the reason it’s available in countries such as the UK is because of partnerships with developers like NetEnt. Games such as Starburst, Gonzo’s Quest and the Guns N’ Roses slot game have not only been designed to be entertaining, but also comply with the strict standards set out by regulators such as the UK Gambling Commission.

This dynamic benefits online casinos like Guts.com as it means players get more entertaining service. In turn, this has helped NetEnt become a standout supplier in the industry and a company that regulators now look to when they want to provide better gaming options in jurisdictions they oversee. This has proved to be the case in British Columbia as NetEnt will now bring more than a decade’s worth of gaming experience and expertise to more than 4.6 million residents.

New deals may signal a new dawn

For industry insiders, this recent move by GPEB will come as a welcome sign that Canada’s iGaming industry may be moving in the right direction. Despite being one of the target markets for many operators, the country’s share of global gaming revenue has fallen in recent years. According to a report by PWC, Canada’s revenue share went from 4.9 per cent in 2010 to 3.4 per cent in 2015.

Part of this drop can be attributed to the growth by markets such as Asia, but there is also a suggestion that a lack of options – moreover, credible gaming options – has hampered the market. However, deals with companies such as NetEnt could help reverse this trend as players will be given greater access to popular games that are also proven to be fair.

Although this might not be enough on its own to take Canada’s gaming revenue back to the point it was in 2010, it should help steady the ship and, potentially, bring about a wave of similar deals in the future.

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