Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Paddy Power Abruptly Cuts off its Canadian Account Holders (Part 2)

In yesterday's post about Paddy Power cutting off its clients in Canada, I suggested that the Canadian provincial governments which have been getting into the business of online gaming may have put pressure on Paddy Power to stop doing business with Canadians.

I thought I might further point out how Paddy Power is in direct competition with the Canadian provinces.

According to a press release from December 2010, Paddy Power uses GTECH G2 to power some of its online gaming.  Meanwhile, according to a press release on Gtech.com:

In Canada, Loto-Quebec will utilize GTECH G2’s online poker platform which will be shared by the British Columbia Lottery Corporation and the Atlantic Lottery Corporation.

In other words, at least three Canadian provinces are using the same gaming platform company as Paddy Power uses.  It would be interesting to see whether each province's relevant Access to Information documents allows Canadians to investigate the communications that government-owned gambling corporations might have sent to Gtech about whether they want Gtech's other clients to be allowed to compete with the Canadian companies.

Bwin is another user of Gtech's services.  According to CalvinAyre.com, Bwin sent this letter to its users back in September 2010:

“We regret to inform you that due to the new regulations of the British Columbia Lottery Corporation, Loto-Qu├ębec and the Atlantic Lottery Corporation, online gaming products in Canada are prohibited. Unfortunately we are required to add Canada to our list of excluded countries. Players from Canada will no longer be permitted to play at Casino Club starting September 24th, 2010.”

Now, those corporations only represent a few of Canada's provinces.  They do not have the power to impose their laws on other Canadian provinces.  They also generally cannot make laws which deal with foreign commerce--an area which is controlled by the federal government.

Is it a coincidence that suddenly the companies which use the same gaming platform provider as the Canadian provinces getting into online gaming are cutting off Canadian clients?  I think it at least warrants some looking into by Canada's Competition Bureau.

No comments:

Post a Comment