Torstar plans to start an online casino betting business later this year

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TORONTO — Torstar Corp. says it plans to start an online casino betting business.

The announcement by the newspaper publisher comes after the 2020 Ontario budget included a promise to license private operators to participate in a regulated online gaming market.

Torstar says its start date is pending approval from the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario and the setting of a launch date by the Ontario government.

Paul Rivett, Torstar’s chair and co-owner, says the made-in-Ontario product keeps dollars in the province while the revenue can support the growth of its journalism.

Torstar is publisher of the Toronto Star as well as other daily newspapers in Ontario, including the Hamilton Spectator, and more than 70 weekly community newspapers.

The company was taken private last year by NordStar Capital LP.

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Torstar holds an investment in The Canadian Press as part of a joint agreement with subsidiaries of the Globe and Mail and Montreal’s La Presse.