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Lawson On Partnering With OLG

Published: April 16, 2017 9:58 am ET

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“We just have to work with OLG and the regulator to make sure these new products are ones that are thought through, and we’re working on them. I mentioned parlay betting and also lottery-style products on horse racing, those types of things, I think those are coming.‎"

Jim Lawson, CEO of Woodbine Entertainment, is "cautiously optimistic" about the push to integrate horse racing with the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp., with hopes that the changes will generate revenue for racing and excite customers.

In a Toronto Sun article, Lawson also describes the possibility of single-game sports betting legislation being passed as being "a real game-changer" and notes that Woodbine has the technology in place via its HPI betting system to be a player.

“We could run single-game sports betting off the backbone of that,” Lawson told the Toronto Sun. “Our tote systems, our whole information technology systems are sophisticated enough to do that. We’re hoping and thinking that there is a role for single-game sports betting and the importance to horse racing is we be part of it rather than be cannibalized.

“We’ve been engaged in a number of conversations. We’ve been proactive to show that our technology can do it. We’d like racing to even be a part of a pro-line type bet today where the parlay betting is allowed. Is it imminent? I’m not sure.”

Lawson also discussed the competitive entertainment landscape in Toronto, the challenge of introducing new people to racing and potential development plans for the 683-acre Woodbine site, which includes a 5,000-seat music venue.

“You can envision the day where it’s a huge, very vibrant community, with the catalyst for all of it being the gaming and entertainment expansion, which we’re hoping to start as early as the end of this year,” said Lawson.

To read the Toronto Sun article in its entirety, click here.

(With files from Toronto Sun)

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