We anticipate that the change to the Code – allowing the use of computer technology with charitable events – will continue to drive regulatory changes across the country that each jurisdiction will implement according to their own timetable. These new licensing regimes will provide significant opportunity to introduce a range of new charitable gaming products across the country, as we have already seen.
“Allowing charitable organizations to use electronic raffle software enables them to add accountability, credibility and security to their raffle program,” says Bump 50:50 President Dan Tanenbaum. “Electronic raffle software allows charitable organizations to seamlessly deploy a raffle program while collecting data to properly analyze their successes, so they can maximize and optimize the program. They are able to grow their raffle program with the flick of a switch without having to pre-print tickets, and the data they collect will allow them to target new donors in the future.”
While Bump 50:50 provides a turn-key electronic raffle solution with onsite company operators, one of the challenges facing charitable organizations seeking to take advantage of the opportunities now available will be training their staff, volunteers, and other service providers in the use of the new gaming technologies, as well as reengineering their business processes.
Another challenge is sheer size. Many electronic gaming solutions are geared toward only the largest of charitable operators. Nicholas Van Zant, co-founder of the BC-based online raffle software solution provider Charit.ee, hopes to change that. “Access to technology like ours is not currently available to not-for-profits running raffles having projected revenue less than $20,000” he says. “At Charit.ee, we only charge when tickets are sold, because we'd like to make it easier for smaller not-for-profits to run fundraising raffles. Smaller not-for-profits have the ability to run their raffles with zero risk, since we do not charge setup fees.”
Charit.ee currently offers the ability to sell online, track their sales, manage their volunteers and export their data. Van Zant says the company will soon be introducing a fully automated platform which will include a certified random number generator. Like Tanenbaum, he notes that allowing online raffles into the charitable gaming sector creates opportunities for data analytics to improve performance, better donor targeting and retention, and eliminates the high costs associated with printing, mailing and labor-intensive manual processes.
Despite these obvious advantages, the adoption of electronic raffle technologies remains in its infancy in Canada. The market opportunity can only grow from here as provincial licensing regimes pursue their phased implementations, and new entrants develop innovative gaming products for the charitable sector.
About the authors:
Troy Ross is the founder of TRM Public Affairs. He has been involved in the public policy and regulatory environment of the gaming sector in Canada for over 20 years. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ron Baryoseph is a Canadian gaming industry veteran with over 25 years of experience. He is the owner of RBY Gaming. Ron can be reached at Ron@RBYGAMING.com.
This article was originally published in the June 2018 issue of Canadian Gaming Business magazine.