Canadian Gaming Association Appointments Give Further Clues About Betting Market

Written By Katarina Vojvodic on December 23, 2021

The Canadian Gaming Association is making new additions. And within them, we might be able to find out some hints about what the national gambling landscape might look like in 2022.

After adding four new members to the board of directors on Nov. 18, the trade association announced appointments Thursday of a Hard Rock International executive as the CGA’s chairperson and a Flutter Entertainment exec as vice chair.

Ilkim Hincer is Hard Rock’s executive vice president and chief legal officer, while George Sweny is vice president of compliance at Flutter.

As Canada sports betting nears its launch in early 2022, the wide swath of representation is worth keeping an eye on.

 “I am pleased that Ilkim has accepted the role of Chair of the Board of Directors,” said Paul Burns, CGA’s president and CEO, in a news release. “I’ve known Ilkim for years and have followed his notable career in the gaming industry. Ilkim has a strong track record with some of the world’s largest gaming operators, both here in Canada and in the United States.

“I look forward to working alongside him as we bounce back from the pandemic and position the CGA to capitalize on all of the exciting technology, iGaming, and sports betting developments across Canada.”

Keep an eye on operators, suppliers on CGA board

The CGA added names of industry insiders to its board of directors only a month ago. Then, four industry veterans made the cut – Scott Burton (FansUnite), Neil Erlick (Nuvei), Jeffrey Haas (DraftKings) and Chuck Keeling (Great Canadian Gaming).

But taking a closer look at the CGA’s list of other board directors, other familiar industry names emerge.

Besides Hard Rock and Flutter officials now leading the board, representatives of Konami Gaming, Scientific Games, FansUnite and IGT are also there.

These are also the suppliers aiming for the Canadian internet gaming market. Their presence on the board perhaps signals a deeper investment.

A Konami Gaming representative, Adriane McGrath, brings 20 years of gaming experience in operations and sales to her current CGA role. McGrath is a director of business development who joined Konami in 2010.

Bob Parente is an executive vice president and chief revenue officer at Scientific Games, while David Flinn works as IGT’s regional VP sales for Canada, South and Central America.

We already knew that companies like DraftKings, FanDuel (owned by Flutter), and Hard Rock had their sights on the Canadian market. But this confirms these companies intend to be leaders in the space.

Conglomeration of key Canadian online gaming entities

Besides the board’s impressive history and industry connections, the CGA has been making progress in other areas.

Back in June, GameOn Entertainment became a member of the association.

Earlier in May, the CGA partnered with Fandom Sports, just in time for single-event sports betting, which was legalized in August.

So, like other association members, that company seems to be aiming to further extend an already remarkable footprint in the Canadian online gaming and sports betting market.

As a big year nears in the Canadian betting world, what’s coming next will be worth watching.

Photo by Shuttershock
Katarina Vojvodic Avatar
Written by
Katarina Vojvodic

Katarina is a Toronto-based online gambling writer who holds a master's degree in journalism. Before joining PlayCanada, she was part of the AskGamblers crew where she reported about the world of online casinos and interviewed numerous iGaming experts. Being in the industry for 5 years, she became an expert in online slots.

View all posts by Katarina Vojvodic
Privacy Policy