Exclusive: Ontario Regulator Issues Slew of New Online Gaming Licenses

Bally Bet, Bet99, Betsafe, CanPlay Ontario, Pinnacle, Nitro Casino, and a host of online casino brands from Apollo Entertainment will be launching in the province.
Ontario Regulator Issues Slew of New Online Gaming Licenses
October 04, 2022

Apollo Entertainment, Pala Interactive, and Sweden’s Betsson AB have each received online gaming licenses in Ontario.

On Thursday, the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) issued one internet gaming operator license each to subsidiaries of Betsson and Pala. That followed the issuance of seven licenses, each for a different Apollo brand, on Wednesday. All nine of the licenses issued have a one-year term.

Betsson will launch its Betsafe platform in Ontario, while Pala will introduce CanPlay Ontario in the province. Meanwhile, Apollo plans to roll out seven online casino skins — Captain Cooks Casino, Casino Classic, Golden Tiger Casino, Grand Mondial Casino, Luxury Casino, Yukon Gold Casino, and Zodiac Casino.

Following licensure by the AGCO, operators must execute an operating agreement with iGaming Ontario (iGO) before going live.

Apollo’s other online casino skins include Casino Action, Casino Kingdom, Grand Hotel Casino, Quatro Casino, UK Casino Club, and Villento Casino.

For global players, all of Apollo’s brands are licensed by the Kahnawake Gaming Commission (KGC), a tribal regulator based in the Mohawk Territory of Kahnawake, in the Canadian province of Québec. Meanwhile, Pala operates online poker and casino platforms in New Jersey.

Slate of Approvals

Apollo, Betsson, and Pala weren’t the only operators awarded licenses by the AGCO in September.

On September 1, the AGCO issued an internet gaming operator license for Bet99, a brand operated by the Swiss firm BQC Consulting GmbH, a subsidiary of Sports Venture Holdings (SVH). Another SVH subsidiary, 1000007698 Ontario Limited, was the entity issued the license by the AGCO.

Bet99 launched in 2020 and was previously available to Ontarians through a license with the KGC, but the brand is now entering the regulated gaming space in Ontario.

AGCO issued a license to Pinnacle, a popular sportsbook in Europe, on September 12. It is the operator’s first in North America. Pinnacle — colloquially known as “Pinny” in Europe — is currently licensed to operate in Italy, Malta, and Sweden.

In a statement on September 12, Pinnacle CEO Paris Smith said Ontario has “a robust and fair regulatory regime in place, along with a knowledgeable sports and betting audience. We’re excited to be able to take our 'Winners Welcome’ mantra to the market and take Ontarian betting to the next level.”

Nitro Casino, an online casino brand of Malta-based PressEnter Group, was issued a license by the AGCO on September 16. PressEnter’s other online casino brands are 21.com, JustSpin, NeonVegas, RapidCasino, and UltraCasino.

On September 27, Bally’s Canada Incorporated, a subsidiary of Bally’s Corporation, received an AGCO license for the Bally Bet brand.

The Bally’s license includes registration for four related domains — ballybet.ca, ballycasino.ca, ballysbet.ca, and ballyscasino.ca.

While the Bet99 and Nitro Casino licenses were issued with one-year terms, the Pinnacle and Bally Bet licenses are both good for two years.

Of the four, only Bally Bet is currently live in Ontario, having executed an operating agreement with the iGO. None of the other three are live because they have not yet taken that step.

Learn more in our complete Ontario Online Casino Reviews and Ontario Online Poker Reviews!

If you or someone you know has a gambling problem and wants help, call the Virginia Council on Problem Gambling (VACPG) helpline at 1-888-532-3500

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