A sustainable horse racing industry
OLG is working with the Ontario government and the horse racing industry to help build a sustainable industry in Ontario.
OLG is integrating horse racing into the provincial gaming strategy. This is part of modernization and is included in OLG’s mandate from the government. OLG is providing support that puts a focus on horse racing to grow the customer base and ensure the industry has a strong future in Ontario by:
- helping the industry become self-governing
- providing responsible gambling expertise
- providing marketing strategy expertise
- developing new horse-themed products
- providing advice to the Province of Ontario and supporting future legislative changes.
“We’re having ongoing discussions with the industry,” said Finance Minister Charles Sousa. “We’re actually looking at bringing on an executive vice-president dedicated to the horse racing industry as part of the management team at the top levels of the OLG.” (QP Briefing, June 4, 2015)
Race tracks with OLG slot facilities, a commitment to live racing and five-year funding under the Horse Racing Partnership Plan have the option for leases with a guaranteed term to 2020.
This aligns with the Ontario government’s commitment for stable funding to the horse racing industry.
On October 11, 2013, the Ontario government announced its five-year plan for a sustainable horse racing industry in the province. The government also released the Horse Racing Industry Transition Panel’s final report – Building a Sustainable Future Together: Ontario’s Five-Year Horse Racing Partnership.
In order to better understand what viable options exist for integrating horse racing into Ontario’s gaming strategy, OLG commissioned two research studies:
- A consumer segmentation study of the horse racing market in Ontario; and
- An inter-jurisdictional study focused on how other jurisdictions integrate gaming and horse racing.
An executive summary of the key findings of both studies is available as an appendix to the panel’s report.
In February 2015, OLG participated in a horse racing stakeholder meeting hosted by the Ministry of Finance. Since then, meetings have been taking place regularly to deepen the relationships between OLG and the industry while beginning to build a collaborative plan for integration.