A new study commissioned by the Quebec Online Gaming Coalition (QOGC) shows that Quebecer prefer to do their sports betting at privately-run sports betting sites than at Loto-Quebec’s Espace Jeux site. The study was conducted by the Mainstreet Research firm. It specifically found that just 26.6% of players play at Loto-Quebec and that nearly 3 out of 4 Québec players choose privately-operated platforms to play online casino games and for sports betting in Quebec.
- The QOGC is a trade organisation made up of major sports betting and online casino companies.
- Only 26.6% of Quebec players use the Loto-Québec site to bet on sports and play online casino games
- 66% of Quebecers are in favour of regulating private online gaming operators through a licensing and tax regime.
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QOGC continues push for legal sports betting in Quebec
The QOGC is a trade organisation made up of major sports betting and online casino companies, such as DraftKings, Betway, Bet99, and BetMGM. The group is mainly a lobbying firm that pushes for the legalisation of sports betting in Quebec. Their movement has been backed up by major sports leagues, including the NBA, MLS, and CFL. This most recent study also supports the group’s goals.
The Mainstreet Research study, which was commissioned by the QOGC and released earlier this week, asked more than 1000 Quebecers who play at Quebec online casinos and sports betting sites about their gaming preferences.
Out of the 1010 Quebecers who played online, over 70% of them had used the Loto-Québec Espace Jeux platform. However, they indicated that they only used the platform to purchase lottery tickets. When you exclude this group, the study found that only 26.6% of Quebec players use the Loto-Québec site to bet on sports and play online casino games. This means that nearly 75% of Quebec sports bettors and online casino players prefer to play at privately-operated platforms.
Ontario sports betting market the template for QOGC
This most recent study from Mainstreet Research lines up with the other studies that the QOGC has commissioned. A Leger Marketing study found that 66% of Quebecers are in favour of regulating private online gaming operators through a licensing and tax regime and that 71% of Quebecers feel the government cannot block private online gaming companies under the current system.
The Leger Marketing study goes much more to the heart of the QOGC’s goals, but the Mainstreet Research study is also useful since it shows that Loto-Québec is not catering properly to Quebecers currently. “’These results show that Loto-Québec’s monopoly only exists on paper, and the Crown Corporation’s recent assessment of its market share does not reflect reality,” said Nathalie Bergeron, a QOGC spokesperson.
The QOGC’s stated goal is to see the government of Quebec adopt a similar licensing and taxation regime as is currently being used in Ontario. In the QOGC’s own words, they would like to see Quebec “build on the Ontario model of online gaming regulation that came into effect in early 2022” and establish its own private licensing agency similar to Ontario’s.
As previously mentioned, the NBA, CFL, and MLS have backed the QOGC. Representatives from each league spoke exclusively to Le Soleil earlier this year expressing their support for legal sports betting in Quebec.
Quebec government unlikely to be moved by study
As damning as the results of these studies seem, it is unlikely that Loto-Québec or the government of Quebec changes its tune on legal sports betting any time soon. Comments from the government regarding legal sports betting in Quebec have ranged from lukewarm to outright hostile.
Renaud Dugas, a representative for Loto-Québec, accused QOGC members of breaking Quebec law by offering illegal betting sites to Quebecers earlier this year when asked about the group earlier this year. Quebec Finance Ministry representatives were reportedly open to comments from the QOGC, but indicated that the group would not be treated differently from any other stakeholder.
Neither statement inspires much hope about the future of legal sports betting in Quebec, so we are not expecting anything to change soon.
Julian Miller is a Canadian writer and an avid sports fan. He has years of experience in the iGaming industry, having started writing while completing his university studies in Montreal, Quebec. In 2022, he graduated, and has since been working full-time in the iGaming space. He has a particular fondness for the English Premier League — though he also has plenty of experience covering football, basketball, and other sports.