PlayNow.com, the only online gambling site licensed to operate in the Canadian province of British Columbia, is to increase its weekly spending limits in an effort to expand its appeal and move high-limit players away from unregulated sites.
Customers registered with PlayNow.com can now set a weekly transfer-in limit of up to CAN$100,000 (£58,182/€68,937/US$75,248), a sharp rise on the previous limit of $9,999.
Players will also now be permitted to keep up to $250,000 in their account at one time, up from the $9,999 that customers were previously permitted to have in their PlayNow.com account.
The British Columbia Lottery Corporation (BCLC), the provincial lottery operator that runs PlayNow.com, said the idea behind the increase is to make its site more appealing to consumers who play at similar limits on so-called ‘grey market sites’ that are not regulated in British Columbia.
The BCLC also noted that the changes will not impact most players, with more than half of its customers setting a weekly deposit limit at $100 or less.
According to PlayNow.com, more than 2,000 unregulated websites are currently active in the province, with around 73% of consumers who gamble online doing so on such sites. The BCLC said that these sites have little or no player health or anti-money laundering safeguards, nor do they pay taxes in British Columbia.
“By increasing deposit and account limits, PlayNow.com is offering high limit players a regulated, secure online-gambling platform with safeguards that support player health while keeping gambling revenue in British Columbia, where it is used to support core services British Columbians depend on, like health care and education,” the BCLC said in a statement.
The BCLC also highlighted safeguards on PlayNow.com designed to encourage healthy play, including age-verification controls, a session log that provides players with information about their activity, a short-term lockout function and a voluntary-self exclusion program.
In October of last year, the BCLC signed a five-year extension to its digital sports betting and online gaming agreement with Scientific Games.
Under the deal, which runs through to 2024, Scientific Games now provides a fully upgraded suite of digital sports betting and igaming solutions, including player account management services.