Rivalry raises $20m ahead of planned IPO

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Canadian eSports betting platform plans for a H1 stock market listing.

The Canadian operator didn’t disclose who the financiers were but noted that funds from Canada, the US, Europe and a gambling operator from Australia participated in the round. It had previously raised close to $9m in other such drives.

“The flavor is very much institutional fund heavy versus venture capital,” commented Steven Salz, co-founder of Rivalry’s parent company, PMML Corp. “The financing was different because we’re on the path to listing the company as well.”

Following the culmination of this latest funding round, Rivalry bosses are planning to list the company on the Canadian stock exchange in the first half of this year, despite single-event sports betting currently illegal in the nation.

While the company’s offices are in Canada, it is yet to go live in its home market due to these licensing regulations. However, two federal bills have been submitted to legislature in order to change this. Both Bill C-218 and Bill C-13 are currently progressing through the House of Commons, and would allow operators to apply for gaming licenses on a region-by-region basis.

Both bills have passed early voting stages with ease, and this progress has helped create a sense that legalized sports betting in the country is a case of when, not if.

This optimism has been reflected in the recent moves of other regional operators. Canadian-based sportsbook, theScore is already listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange, and made its debut on the Nasdaq on 25 February.

Regarding the progress of Canadian sports betting legislation, theScore founder and CEO, John Levy commented: “Today’s development in the House of Commons, focusing on the legalization of single-event sports betting in Canada, is a significant step forward in the process to amend an outdated law. The positive outcome of today’s vote demonstrates the continuing momentum and strong cross-party support for this issue.”

The Canadian online gaming market could be worth between $3.8bn and $5.4bn according to GGR projections from theScore.

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