Rewind Time: 3 Big Fintech & iGaming Stories
2022 was a big year for Canadian iGaming and fintech industries. Both industries made major progress through important regulations, partnerships, and discussions. So as the year is coming to an end, we’re looking at 3 of the biggest Canadian iGaming and fintech stories that will have a major impact in the coming year.
Ontario’s iGaming Market Launch
After months of eagerly waiting, Ontario officially launched its regulated iGaming market earlier this year. With gaming being the largest segment of Canada’s entertainment industry, this was a huge first step for Canada’s regulated online gaming market. And Ontario’s iGaming market delivered. According to the Q1 & Q2 market performance reports shared by iGaming Ontario, the market indicated it has an active and growing player base as well as an increased interest from operators in expanding to Canada. Q2 brought over 136,000 new active player accounts who on average spent $142 every month, a notable increase when compared to last quarter. Additionally, the number of operators and gaming websites grew. 6 new operators and 11 new gaming websites went live in the province in Q2, bringing the total number of operators to 24 and gaming websites to 42. Ontario’s iGaming market growth has shown great potential over the last two quarters. With the many major sporting seasons currently underway, along with the expectation of more licensed operators moving into Ontario, Q3 could easily surpass the results from Q2. While Ontario welcomed international merchants to the province, other provinces such as British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Quebec, Alberta, and Saskatchewan started offering online gaming through regulated province-run online casinos/sportsbook which have the support of gaming authorities as well.
The first non-bank opens Bank Of Canada account
The online investment management service, Wealthsimple, recently made an exciting announcement. Wealthsimple became the first non-bank/credit union to be approved by the Bank of Canada for a direct settlement account. Wealthsimple is poised to be the first fintech to have direct access to the Real-Time-Rail payment system when it is launched in the country. The co-founder of Wealthsimple, Michael Katchen, shared the significance behind the announcement, “Approval is monumental for our business but beyond that, will change the landscape of financial services in Canada. This decision helps level the playing field with incumbents. It means we’ll be able to keep innovating and delivering on projects we have long imagined will improve the everyday lives of the over 2.5 million Canadians we serve today. Things like instant wage disbursement and instant bill pay.”
The Future Of Open Banking In Canada
Technology is making the lives of consumers easier by making services easily accessible. With the click of a button, consumers can now have groceries delivered to their homes, purchase those last-minute Christmas gifts, and even fund their iGaming accounts. But consumers in Canada need more choices when it comes to gaining access to diverse financial services. This is where Open Banking comes in. According to the Government Of Canada’s website, Open banking is a secure way for consumers to share their financial data with financial technology companies. While open banking has been popular in regions such as Europe, markets like the US and Canada are yet to catch up. But there is hope. Open banking discussions are happening in Canada right now, with the initial phase of open banking coming to Canada as early as 2023. Even though open banking in Canada is still in its infancy phase, it has begun to capture the attention of consumers and businesses alike due to the benefits it presents such as custom finance-linked services. A big part of open banking is the sharing of financial data in a secure manner. Now when consumers will consent to have that data shared with third-party service providers, those providers will use it to provide solutions that match a consumer’s needs. This could be a credit card with lower interest rates, or a chequing account with lower yearly fees. This way consumers are able to have access to a variety of products that save them money and fit their needs.
2022 was a big year for the iGaming and fintech industries of Canada. Not only was there growth but there were important discussions that will pave the way for bigger opportunities for the industries in the future. 2023 is set to be an exciting year with the initial phase of open banking making its way to Canada, iGaming becoming more prominent throughout the country, and fintech companies forming significant partnerships with government bodies.