While the province of Ontario, where up to a third of all Canadians live, has embraced a free-market approach to online gambling and sports betting, the mighty province of Saskatchewan is just now embracing online gambling with regulation occurring in Canada and revenues distributed at home.
The Saskatchewan Indian Gaming Authority (SIGA) has announced it will launch a casino and sportsbetting site under the PlayNow brand on November 3, 2022. The gambling site will be operated by the Saskatchewan Gaming Corporation (SaskGaming) and will be the only site in the province to hold a license based in Canada.
Most online casinos that are located offshore serve Canadians, no matter which province or territory they live in, but they are usually either licensed by the Malta Gaming Authority, Caribbean regulators (Curacao), or by the Kahnawake Gaming Commission located in the Mohawk Territory of Kahnawake just outside Montreal, Quebec.
Last September, an arrangement between the provincial government and the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations (FSIN) to get the online gaming site off the ground was agreed to by the parties.
The betting platform will be provided by the British Columbia Lottery Corporation (BCLC) and based on the PlayNow.com site the crown corporation runs in British Columbia. A similar site under the PlayNow domain is also active in Manitoba, with the SaskGaming making a total of three “PlayNow” destinations.
Specifically for Residents of Saskatchewan
The sites use geolocation software with the BC site meant only for players in that province and the Manitoba site for players in the province between Saskatchewan and Ontario.
SIGA will be the official operator of PlayNow.com in Saskatchewan as per an operating agreement with SaskGaming.
“We are excited to be the exclusive provider of Saskatchewan’s first and only legal online gaming site, which will provide a safe and secure option for residents to play their favorite casino games and bet on their favorite sports teams online,” said SIGA President and CEO Zane Hansen.
FSIN chief Bobby Cameron added: “This historical partnership is the first of its kind with a First Nations operator for online gaming, with revenue sharing between First Nations and the province. This will provide many economic benefits to the residents of the province and our First Nations communities.”
SaskGaming President and CEO Susan Flett said: “The rollout of online gaming and single event sports betting opens up new casino entertainment options for residents,” “The launch timing is also ideal with Saskatchewan hosting this year’s Grey Cup in November.”
“Residents will be pleased to know that when they play on the PlayNow.com site, the proceeds are reinvested back into the province,” said Hansen.
“Similar to the existing brick-and-mortar casinos in the province, all net proceeds from the PlayNow.com site are reinvested back into Saskatchewan,” he said.
Partnership with Rider Nation
Further localizing the offering for Saskatchewanians, the casino/sportsbook has entered into a partnership deal with the Saskatchewan Roughriders football team which wore the Playnow.com logo on their jerseys in a game against the Calgary Stampeders on Saturday, October 22. Additional stadium activations have been arranged to help promote the site to Saskatchewaners.
“We are excited to welcome PlayNow.com as a valued partner and newest member of our strong Rider Nation,” said Saskatchewan Roughrider Football Club President & CEO Craig Reynolds.
Source: SIGA Announces Date Of Nov. 3, Playnow.com Will Be Available To Sask. Residents, SIGA.ca, October 21, 2022