888 Holdings announced this week that it is one of the first companies granted licensing for iGaming in Ontario, Canada. The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario approved the company, with the new online market launching on April 4. 888 will be ready to offer casino, sports, and poker products to players within the province upon the launch date. The company offers iGaming via proprietary technology.
Expanding Into Attractive Markets
Over the past few months, all eyes have been on Ontario, Canada as the province prepares to offer iGaming services. 888 Holdings wanted to enter the market as part of its growth strategy. The company is focused on expanding its service options to attractive markets where regulation exists or is coming to fruition.
The move into Ontario represents an opportunity for long-term growth with 888 already having strong brand awareness in the province. The company is hopeful that it will be able to leverage its full marketing potential and focus efforts on product leadership.
With the approval, 888 Holdings is now operational in 19 markets including several areas within the US.
888 Holdings CEO Itai Pazner, commented on the new approval by stating:
“We are delighted to have been awarded a license by the AGCO and look forward to launching in the market when it officially opens. As a Group, our focus is on strengthening our presence and offer to customers across key regulated markets. To that end, Ontario represents an attractive long-term growth opportunity for 888 and this is an extremely strategically important milestone for us.”
Pazner stated further that as the company prepares to launch in Ontario, they are excited to bring 888’s products and games to a new audience within the province.
Fined by UK Gambling Commission
While 888 Holdings is preparing to launch in Canada, the company was recently hit with a large fine in the United Kingdom. The Gambling Commission fined the 888 UK Limited subsidiary of 888 Holdings due to social responsibility and money laundering issues. The company is to pay £9.4 million ($12.5 million) to the regulator.
The UK subsidiary was fined for several issues including not completing financial checks until customers had deposited large quantities of cash. Major issues were connected to the COVID-19 pandemic, where players were allowed to deposit five figures in short time periods without being reviewed by 888 employees.
The company was also cited for not following formal guidance regarding customer interaction and allowing a player a monthly deposit cap that was close to their monthly earnings. Players were also allowed to have multiple accounts without being managed by the company.