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Canada

Insider Knowledge at Canadian Gaming Summit: ‘Leaders’ Track Showcases Top Operators and Regulators

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Apart from a vibrant exhibition showcasing various products and services and numerous networking opportunities, the Canadian Gaming Summit, the country’s premier gaming and betting event, will host a conference with an unrivaled line-up of first-rate speakers hand-picked by event organizer SBC.

The ‘Leaders’ conference track, which will take place on June 14 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, is an undisputed highlight of the event’s 26th edition, as it spotlights the most influential decision-makers, thought leaders and innovators in the Canadian gaming industry.

Attendees will gain unparalleled insights from Canada’s most successful operators, including representatives from PointsBet, BetMGM, Kindred and FanDuel. Furthermore, event visitors will have the opportunity to hear directly from regulators and exchange ideas with their peers in the gaming industry.

The opening panel of the ‘Leaders’ conference track will delve into Canada’s potential to become an international hub for iGaming innovation. Esteemed industry executives Scott Vanderwel (CEO, PointsBet Canada), Amanda Brewer (Country Manager Canada, Kindred), Dale Hooper (General Manager Canada, FanDuel) and Scott Woodgate (VP Canada, BetMGM) will explore how Canada can leverage its status as a well-established tech hub and center for global investments to emerge as a worldwide center for iGaming innovation.

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Drawing upon their experiences as established operators who were among the first to obtain legal operator titles in the Canadian market, the panelists will compare Canada’s situation with that of US states and discuss how local operators can compete with larger organizations for market share. In addition, the speakers will discuss the prospects of regulatory collaboration across jurisdictions and examine the potential of other provinces outside Ontario to chart a course.

The second panel is dedicated to regulators, who will reflect on the key takeaways from the opening of the province of Ontario and explore how these lessons can be applied to other provinces and Canadian territories. The panel will feature Martha Otton, Executive Director of iGaming Ontario, a subsidiary of the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) that was established to regulate the new market, and Tom Mungham, Chief Executive Officer of the AGCO.

The panelists will examine how various provinces across Canada can collaborate and align on best practices and expansion tactics. They will also analyze the accuracy of the predictions that were made when the market opened in Ontario. With their first-hand experience in the regulation of the industry, the speakers will provide invaluable insights into how Canada’s gaming sector can continue to thrive in the years to come.

The closing keynote fireside chat will feature Ray Pineault (CEO, Mohegan Gaming & Entertainment) and Ilkim Hincer (EVP & Chief Legal Officer, Hard Rock International). The experts will explore the convergence of iGaming, land-based gaming and provincial lotteries and elaborate on how the established land-based businesses and lotteries can capitalize on their knowledge by translating their core values to digital platforms. The speakers will also discuss the importance of partnerships with regulators and First Nations and the potential of simultaneously fulfilling the needs of various audience clusters through omnichannel experiences.

“There’s a lot to learn in Canada, especially since Ontario became the first province in Canada to regulate online gambling, legalizing what was previously a grey market,” Rasmus Sojmark, CEO & Founder of SBC, said. “Ontario’s regulation of online gambling has set the stage for the Canadian gaming industry’s growth and has already provided valuable insights that could be applicable to other provinces and territories in Canada.

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“There are no better candidates to educate the industry on the potential and the lessons learned than industry leaders representing some of the biggest players in the region and the regulatory bodies who hold registered operators to high standards of responsible gambling, player protection and game integrity. We’re excited to host some industry titans who will share their insights with the audience.”

There will be three conference stages running simultaneously at the Canadian Gaming Summit. The first stage will host the following tracks: ‘Leaders’ and ‘Land-based’ on June 14 and ‘Growth and Leadership’ on June 15. The second stage will host the ‘Sports Betting’ track on June 14 and the ‘Affiliates and Advertising’ track on June 15 while the third stage will focus on ‘iGaming’ on June 14 and ‘Payments & Compliance’ on June 15.

Visit the Canadian Gaming Summit website to access the conference agenda and purchase your tickets at the Early Bird discount of CA$795, a CA$200 saving from the regular full event ticket price. The Early bird deal expires on April 14, 2023. Operators and affiliates with an interest in the Canadian gambling market can register for free. To qualify, operators must fill in this form while affiliates need to fill in their information at the following link.

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Canada

Glitnor Group expands IBIA’s betting integrity presence in Ontario

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Glitnor Group, operating under the LCKY Group in Ontario, has joined the International Betting Integrity Association (IBIA). Glitnor Group’s luckycasino.ca brand sportsbook will feed into IBIA’s world leading betting integrity monitoring platform. The operator joins over 50 companies and 125 leading sports betting brands in IBIA and further cements the association’s position as the leading sports betting integrity monitoring body in Ontario and globally.

David Schwieler LCKY Group CEO, said: “At Glitnor Group, we’re dead serious about keeping our betting games fair and square. That’s why teaming up with IBIA is a big deal for us. We know how crucial it is to protect the spirit of sports, and we’re ready to roll up our sleeves and work closely with the IBIA to make sure sports betting stays exciting, speedy, and above all, fair.”

Khalid Ali, CEO of IBIA, said: “I am delighted to welcome Glitnor Group as IBIA’s latest member in Ontario. Glitnor and IBIA share a common goal to maintain the integrity of the sports betting marketplace and to protecting consumers and sports from match-fixing. Ensuring product integrity is paramount to our approach and we look forward to integrating Glitnor within our leading global sports betting integrity monitoring system.”

IBIA is a not-for-profit body that has no competing conflicts with the delivery of commercial services to other sectors and is run by operators for operators to protect regulated sports betting markets from match-fixing. IBIA’s global monitoring network is a highly effective anti-corruption tool, detecting and reporting suspicious activity in regulated betting markets.

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Through the IBIA global monitoring network it is possible to track transactional activities linked to individual customer accounts. IBIA members have over $300bn per annum in betting turnover (handle), accounting for approximately 50% of the global commercial regulated land-based and online sports betting sector, and in excess of 50% for online alone.

IBIA recently released a report on the Availability of Sports Betting Products which highlighted Ontario as a leading regulated gambling jurisdiction, with an expected onshore channelisation for sports betting of 92% in 2024 forecast to rise to 97% in 2028. IBIA currently represents over 60% of the private sports betting operators licensed in the province. All online sports betting operators licensed in Ontario are required to be part of a betting integrity monitoring body.

IBIA’s 2023 annual integrity report detailed 184 alerts reported in the year, which represents a decrease of 101 (or 35%) on the revised 2022 figure of 285 alerts. IBIA alerts contributed to the investigations and subsequent successful sanctioning of 21 clubs, players and officials in 2023, an increase on the 15 sanctioned in 2022.

The post Glitnor Group expands IBIA’s betting integrity presence in Ontario appeared first on European Gaming Industry News.

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Bragg Gaming Group

Bragg Gaming Announces Resignation of Chief Financial Officer

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Bragg Gaming Group Inc., a global B2B gaming technology and content provider, announced that Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Ronen Kannor, has notified Bragg’s board of directors (Board) that he will resign from his position to pursue other career opportunities, effective June 3, 2024. The Company confirms that the search for a replacement CFO has commenced.

Matevž Mazij, Chief Executive Officer and Chair of the Board, commented: “We thank Ronen for his dedication and commitment to Bragg over the past four years and for his unwavering service as a pivotal member of the leadership team.

“During his tenure as CFO, the Company has undergone huge positive transformation including being uplisted to the Toronto Stock Exchange, dual listed on the NASDAQ and successfully completing two acquisitions, all while reporting consecutive years of revenue, gross profit and adjusted EBITDA growth. We wish Ronen all the very best in his future endeavors.”

Ronen Kannor commented: “It has been an honor to be part of the Bragg team which has successfully navigated many challenges and continued to deliver consistent growth over the past four years. I thank the Board for their support throughout my time with Bragg, and I am now fully focused on ensuring a smooth handover to my successor.

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“Special thanks goes to my finance team, who work tirelessly to deliver the positive change and financial growth that the Company continues to achieve. I wish them and all of my colleagues continued success with Bragg now and in the future.”

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Rivalry Reports Preliminary Fourth Quarter and Year-End 2023 Results

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  • Betting handle of $423.2 million in FY 20231 increased 82% year-over-year, while reducing marketing spend 15%.
  • Revenue of $35.7 million in FY 2023 increased 34%.
  • Gross profit of $16.2 million in FY 2023, up 66% year-over-year.
  • FY23 sets all-time records for average handle per customer, up nearly 30% year-over-year, average revenue per customer up 38% year-over-year, and record low cost of customer acquisition, down 15% year-over-year.
  • Total player registrations eclipsed 2 million in FY23 while extending Gen Z market leadership.
  • FY24 off to a strong start as the capital raised late Q4 is being effectively deployed – delivering strong KPIs, supported by betting margin trending toward a more than 20% increase over the average of FY23.
  • To meet growing consumer demand the Company is adding greater support for cryptocurrency and exploring implementation of adjacent crypto-enabled technologies.
  • Rivalry is seeing a rise in demand to license its in-house casino games, accelerating the advancement of its B2B vertical.
  • Company re-affirms guidance, anticipates achieving profitability in H1 2024.

Rivalry Corp. (the “Company” or “Rivalry”) (TSXV: RVLY) (OTCQX: RVLCF) (FSE: 9VK), the leading sportsbook and iGaming operator for Gen Z, today announced preliminary and unaudited financial results for the three and 12-month periods ended December 31, 2023. All dollar figures are quoted in Canadian dollars.

“Rivalry exited 2023 as an increasingly diversified company – both geographically and across our product suite,” said Steven Salz, Co-Founder and CEO of Rivalry. “Last year we gained meaningful traction in new segments such as traditional sports, casino, and fantasy, which is widening our opportunity set and positioning us for sustainable growth in the medium- to long-term. We’re happy to have finished the year with all-time high customer economics, diversified revenue streams, and a reinforced competitive moat around Gen Z betting entertainment and experiences.”

“During Q1 we have been strategically deploying capital from our fourth quarter investment in areas that are driving customer acquisition and revenue – such as amplifying proven marketing strategies, releasing higher margin products, and developing proprietary betting experiences – that we expect will begin materializing in our results throughout the first half of 2024 and beyond,” added Salz.

“Our operational excellence across product and brand marketing last year are seen across positive KPI trends and continued year-over-year growth. Ultimately, we are proving that we can acquire and retain a coveted Gen Z demographic through an entertainment-led product set, culturally relevant brand, and a team unafraid of pushing past a long-standing industry status quo.”

Preliminary Full-Year 2023 Highlights2

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  • Betting handle was $423.2 million in the year ended December 31, 2023, an increase of $190.4 million or 82% from $232.8 million in 2022.
  • Revenue was $35.7 million in 2023, an increase of $9.0 million or 34% compared to $26.6 million in the previous year.
  • Gross profit was $16.2 million in 2023, an increase of $6.4 million or 66% from $9.8 million of gross profit in 2022.
  • The Casino segment was a significant driver of growth in 2023, with revenues of $6.4 million up 92% from 2022, and representing 52% of betting handle in the year.
  • The Company expanded its casino offering significantly during 2023, including the release of a new original game Cash & Dash in September, entry into the slots category in October, and the launch of its iOS mobile app in Ontario, enhancing the mobile casino experience and its accessibility.
  • Diversified revenue streams through new segments including traditional sports, which has grown by 60% since FY22, and fantasy, highlighting the elasticity of Rivalry’s brand among Gen Z and broadening TAM.
  • Total operating expenses of $38.9 million in 2023 decreased by $1.0 million year-over-year. The decrease was driven by a reduction in marketing expense, offsetting increases in general & administration and technology & content expense incurred to support the growth of the business.
  • Net loss was $24.3 million for 2023, a reduction of 22% or $6.9 million from the net loss of $31.1 million in 2022.

Fourth Quarter 2023 Highlights

  • Betting handle for the three-month period ended December 31, 2023 was $85.2 million, an increase of $1.2 million or 1.5% from $83.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2022 while marketing spend decreased by 32%.
  • Revenue was $6.5 million in the Q4 2023, representing a decrease of $3.0 million or 32% from $9.4 million of revenue in Q4 2022 due to less favorable sportsbook outcomes compared against an abnormally favorable result experienced in Q4 2022. The Company notes that revenue as a percentage of betting handle was near the average achieved throughout FY23, highlighting the abnormally favorable margin outcome in the comparable quarter, Q4 2022.
  • Gross profit was $3.0 million in Q4 2023, a decrease of $2.0 million or 40% from $5.0 million of gross profit in Q4 2022. The year-over-year decline follows the relative margin impact noted previously. Gross profit as a percentage of betting handle in Q4 2023 was equal to the average in FY23. Rivalry is also pleased to note that its ongoing efforts to stabilize and improve margin are yielding results, with Q1 2024 trending toward a more than 20% improvement over the average in FY23.
  • Net loss was $9.0 million in Q4 2023, a reduction of $3.3 million compared to a net loss of $12.3 million in Q4 2022. Net loss adjusting for accruals, other non-cash items, and one-time expenses, would have been approximately $7.0 million.
  • On November 15, 2023, Rivalry strengthened its balance sheet with the announcement of a private placement offering of $14 million principal amount senior secured convertible debentures to scale several strategic verticals across marketing, product development, and geographic expansion.
  • Released Rivalry Ultimate Fan, a free-to-play NBA fantasy app, to acquire new users and engage existing customers within the product suite.
  • First-party game ‘Cash & Dash’ released in September demonstrated next generation appeal as it became the fifth most-played casino game on our platform and among the top ten highest-grossing by revenue with momentum carrying into Q1, creating downstream licensing opportunities for Rivalry’s IP.

Outlook

“The year ahead is rife with new, innovative product releases arriving in Q2 and continuing throughout 2024,” Salz added. “In addition to the strength of our core roadmap, we are in the process of unlocking what we believe to be two of the most material developments to our business model since launching Rivalry in 2018. The first is a B2B vertical to license our in-house developed games, and the second is exploration and development within the crypto ecosystem – each representing an impactful growth catalyst on our path to profitability this year.”

“I have never had more confidence in our product roadmap and what Rivalry is building this year. Apart from new products, original games, and proprietary features, we have been working to dial-up the overall feel and entertainment value of our core product to provide a tech-savvy, next generation customer with a tailored experience that is well-differentiated within the larger sports betting marketplace.”

Investor Conference Call

Management will host a conference call at 10:00 a.m. EDT on Friday, April 5, 2024 to discuss the Company’s preliminary unaudited year-end and fourth quarter 2023 financial results.

Dial-in: 800-717-1738 (toll free) or (+1) 289-514-5100 (local or international calls)
Webcast:         A live webcast can be accessed from the Events section of the Company’s website
A replay of the webcast will be archived on the Company’s website for one year.

Rivalry expects to file its audited financial statements and management discussion and analysis for the period ended December 31, 2023 by the end of April 2024. The documents will be available on SEDAR+ at sedarplus.ca, and on the Company’s website.

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Related Party Transaction

On April 17, 2022 the Company entered into a secured demand loan (the “Loan”) with Kevin Wimer, the Chief Operating Officer and a Director of the Company. Pursuant to the terms of the Loan, the Company loaned Mr. Wimer US$385,000 which amount bears interest at 3.2% per annum and was repayable on demand by the Company and in any event by April 17, 2024 (the “Maturity Date”). The Loan was entered into to assist Mr. Wimer with the funding of certain tax obligations and is secured by a pledge of Mr. Wimer’s subordinate voting shares of the Company. The Company announces today that it has entered into an amendment to the Loan (the “Loan Amendment”) to extend the Maturity Date to April 17, 2026. The Loan Amendment was approved by the non-interested directors of the Company.

Mr. Wimer is a “related party” of the Company within the meaning of Multilateral Instrument 61-101 – Protection of Minority Security Holders in Special Transactions (“MI 61-101“). As a result, the Loan Amendment is considered to be a “related party transaction” as such term is defined by MI 61-101. The Company is relying on an exemption from the minority shareholder approval requirement set out in MI 61-101 as the fair market value of the transaction does not exceed 25% of the market capitalization of the Company, as determined in accordance with MI 61-101. The Company did not file a material change report more than 21 days before entering into the closing of the Loan Amendment as the details of the Loan Amendment were not settled until shortly prior to the entering into thereof.

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