The iGaming industry is booming and among the fastest-growing sectors of the global economy. It's predicted that the international online gambling market will top $150bn by 2031, equivalent to an annual average growth rate of 11.7%.
For iGaming operators looking for growth, their focus is firmly fixed on new and emerging regulated markets opening up. Notably, the previous year saw significant developments in North America, with New York state and the Canadian province of Ontario joining the fray. South America also witnessed progress, particularly in Peru.
However, as operators strive to expand their reach into new jurisdictions, which markets offer the most promising opportunities for operators in the next year?
Since the launch of iGaming Ontario in April 2022, we've witnessed a remarkable success story unfold in this market. Martha Otton, Executive Director at iGaming Ontario (IGO), recently revealed IGO's total wagers for the last quarter was "around" $14 billion and total gaming revenue for the July-September period was “just over” $540 million.
Today, over 60% of gaming brands holding the iGaming Ontario license have chosen to partner with us. With our recent access to two of the major Canadian Credit Bureaus, Equifax and TransUnion, our customers are seeing a 10% boost in player pass rates.
With the success of iGaming Ontario, the odds that other Canadian provinces will follow suit have also increased. Observers of the Canadian online gaming market are predicting more growth and more opportunities for operators to open up. Canada’s online gaming market could reach $5.8bn by 2026 if liberalisation in online sports betting goes ahead in Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba and Saskatchewan, according to VIXIO, the regulatory intelligence specialists.
We posed the question 'What's next for regulated iGaming in Canada?' to a panel of experts, including Scott Vanderwel, CEO of PointsBet Canada; Amanda Brewer, Country Manager at Kindred Group; Jack Tadman, iGaming Regulation legal expert; and Steve McAllister, Founder of Gaming News Canada. Watch our on-demand webinar to learn which Canadian province will be next.
iGaming operators seeking growth are monitoring the emergence of regulated markets in Latin America. Brazil's Chamber of Deputies recently debated a bill for sports betting regulation, advancing it through Congress. Peru has also just issued a regulatory decree to implement its online gambling law, initiating a 150-day countdown until the market's full official regulation, rendering gray-market operations illegal.
The iGaming market in Latin America is as diverse as it is dynamic – the region consists of 33 countries and union territories and each country regards and regulates gambling differently with varying degrees of social acceptance. While the market is complex there are rewards for those businesses that can overcome perceived barriers to entry in this market.
At GBG, we are working with several operators looking to expand into Latin America and offer an integrated global portfolio of player identity checks and KYC solutions for iGaming operators. Read our latest blog on how we are helping operators in Latin America onboard more global customers.
In a surprising turn of events, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is on the brink of surpassing Singapore as Asia's leading iGaming hub. For centuries, the Middle East had been an unlikely candidate for gambling due to strict regulations. However, a groundbreaking collaboration is unfolding in Ras Al Khaimah (RAK), a group of seven islands within the UAE. RAK is now partnering with the renowned US casino operator, Wynn Resorts, to create an extraordinary hotel and casino destination. This unprecedented alliance has the potential to revolutionise the iGaming industry.
To help support iGaming firms looking for global growth, we've expanded our global data and document coverage to over 194 countries. Explore our interactive map to discover more about our global reach and capabilities.
One of the biggest challenges in the gaming industry is the acquisition of new customers. The competitive landscape is fierce, requiring substantial marketing efforts to vie for market share. Balancing the need for cost-effective acquisition while ensuring regulatory Anti-Money Laundering compliance is an ongoing challenge.
Moreover, the industry faces a persistent threat of ever-increasing fraud, particularly in the form of bonus abuse and account opening fraud. Bonus abuse is booming, reportedly costing the online gaming sector around 15% of its annual gross revenue.
There is a need in the market for robust solutions to detect and prevent fraudulent activities while delivering an exceptional user experience and ensuring player protection.
The iGaming industry is also facing ever-tightening regulations, both in the UK and globally. GBG's Global Data Docs coverage is invaluable in this regard, ensuring operators have access to comprehensive, up-to-date information. Additionally, we're vigilant against emerging threats like deep fakes and GAN-generated fakes in documents, employing advanced technology to detect and prevent fraud.
Ultimately, these challenges also present opportunities for growth and innovation. By staying agile, investing in technology, and collaborating closely with our customers and partners, we're well-positioned to navigate these trends and ensure that GBG remains a trusted leader in providing solutions for the evolving landscape of the iGaming industry.
To foster business growth, gaming companies must prioritise three key elements: efficient player onboarding, robust fraud prevention, and strategic expansion through acquiring new licenses.
This approach, coupled with strategic partnerships with technology and compliance experts such as GBG to navigate intricate regulatory environments, positions iGaming companies for success in a fiercely competitive industry.
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