One of the first sports betting brands to launch operations in Ontario, Coolbet, announced its decision to withdraw from the Canadian province due to the extremely competitive environment.
GAN’s sports betting brand Coolbet launched operations concurrently with the official market launch in Ontario in April last year, but is now set to become the first to leave, citing the extremely competitive market conditions.
In a recent blog post, Coolbet announced that the brand will stop operating in Ontario on April 3, 2023, advising its customers to withdraw their remaining funds as soon as possible. Coolbet also provided its players with a timetable, stating that all deposit options will be turned off on March 21 and that its casino and sportsbook will close by the end of the subsequent day, March 22.
“If you have a bet that cannot be settled by then because the outcome is still unknown, the bet will be voided and refunded,” the sportsbook told its customers, outlining that “this includes futures and in parlays, if any of the outcomes result is not known the part of that parlay will be voided and odds set to 1.00.”
As for active bonuses, Coolbet advised all players to complete the wagering requirements by March 22 but also told them that in case they could not, their bonus funds will be fully unlocked from the wagering requirements on March 23.
By the end of April 3, the operator intends to shut down its website and mobile app and stop operating in the Canadian province. It also recommended its customers switch to the online casino brand and Coolbet friend, Wildz.
Earlier in the year, the legal entity managing internet gaming in the Canadian province of Ontario, iGaming Ontario (iGO), revealed in its third-quarter report that the Ontario market had achieved significant growth, nearly doubled the previous quarter’s total wagers and generated 71% more revenue. iGO also stated that the number of active operators increased by 50%.
Only months into operations, the company stated that its start in Ontario had been slower than anticipated and that its future outlook in the province had been softened due to the competitive nature of the market. Currently, there are more than 70 iGaming operators in Ontario competing for a market share and further heightening the promotional aspect of the market.
Coolbet decided to withdraw from Ontario, focusing on maximizing profitability while assessing new regulated market opportunities that may provide good returns.
In January, Coolbet went live in Mexico in an asset-light launch relying heavily on local partnerships and sponsorships to make the country its tenth Latin American gaming jurisdiction.