Torstar Corporation has announced its plans to launch an online casino brand in Ontario’s regulated online gaming market this year.
The launch is pending approval from Ontario’s Alcohol and Gaming Commission, as well as a date set by the region’s government.
Corey Goodman, chief corporate development officer at Torstar said: “We are excited at the prospect of participating in a regulated online Ontario gaming market with a made-in-Ontario product.
‘unique and responsible gaming brand’
“As an Ontario-based media business and trusted brand for more than 128 years, we believe Torstar will provide a unique and responsible gaming brand that creates new jobs, offers growth for the Ontario economy and generates new tax revenue to help support important programs in our province.”
The 2019-2020 Ontario budget included a promise to licence companies to operate in the province’s regulated online gaming market. The regional government announced in its most recent budget that it would be “introducing legislation to give the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario authority to conduct and manage igaming, in addition to having the role of the regulator.”
The commission would “manage the relationship between the government and private igaming operators.” The bill has been passed and is currently awaiting proclamation.
Paul Rivett, chair and co-owner of Torstar said: “There are two reasons for our entry into this field. First, we want to ensure the new marketplace is well represented with a Canadian, Ontario-based gaming brand so that more of our players’ entertainment dollars stay in our province.
“Second, doing this as part of Torstar will help support the growth and expansion of quality community-based journalism.”
Torstar’s businesses include the Toronto Star, six regional daily newspapers in Ontario, and more than 70 weekly community newspapers across the province.
Gil Steinfeld, Jim Warren, and former General Counsel for the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario Don Bourgeois are among the key additions to the digital and print news organisation’s igaming team. They’ll be joining Goodman and Lorenzo DeMarchi, Torstar’s chief investment officer, on the team.