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Sports Betting Legalization Frees Huge Canadian Demand

This article is published in collaboration with Statista

by Martin Armstrong

When single-game sports betting was legalized in Canada in the summer of 2021, a massive wave of demand was unleashed. According to estimates by Statista Market Insights, that year saw 6.1 million online users and a penetration rate of 16 percent. By 2023, there are expected to be over 16 million people placing online sports bets, making for an astonishing 42 percent penetration rate.

That's just the beginning though, as according to Statista analysts, the market is expected to grow even further up to 2027, with a forecast 24 million users and a penetration rate of 59 percent. Taking the UK as an example of a more mature market for comparison, the sheer scale of the growth, even after just two years, becomes clear - not just expanding to the same size in a rapid amount of time, but significantly outgrowing it.

This doesn't necessarily represent the typical behavior of an unshackled market, either. A similar legalization in the United States, for example, has so far developed in a far more subdued manner. According to Statista Market Insights, online sports betting in the U.S. - legal since 2019 - has a penetration rate of just 9 percent in 2023, and is forecast to reach just 14 percent by 2027.

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