It’s been a robust year on the gaming front on the Canadian Prairies, according to the 2022-23 annual report issued yesterday the Saskatchewan Indian Gaming Authority (SIGA).
SIGA reports that they hit $292.6 million in revenue, with net income of $126 million, over the past fiscal year (ending March 31, 2023). That’s compared to $195.8 million in revenue in 2021-22, $68.2 million in net income that fiscal year.
Expenses came in at $166.6 million, compared to $127.6 million in 2021-22.
SIGA, which launched in 1996, operates seven casinos in the province, with slot machines, live and electronic table games, live entertainment, an array of lounges and restaurants, and now the online-gaming website PlayNow.com, launched last November, the only legally operated online-gaming and sports-betting site in Saskatchewan. SIGA is a nonprofit corporation that re-invests all net revenue back into Saskatchewan.
“SIGA continues to be a major driver in the province, strengthening the lives of First Nation people through employment, economic growth, positive community relations and financial self-reliance,” said Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations (FSIN) chief Bobby Cameron.
Fifty percent of net revenue is redistributed to the First Nations Trust (then distributed to the 74 First Nations in the province), 25 percent to Community Development Corporations, which reinvests back into local community initiatives, and 25 percent to the provincial General Revenue Fund.
Since the initial launch, PlayNow.com has acquired over 15,000 players, generating $113 million in online slot wagers, $50 million in slot spins, $5 million in net win, and $117,000 in sports bets (most popular sports being hockey, basketball, and football).
“This past year was an important time of recovery for SIGA from the pandemic, as we launched PlayNow.com in Saskatchewan and kept a steady focus on building back our most critical resources – our markets, employees, and finances. SIGA’s efforts were rewarded as a return of revenues to pre-pandemic levels, combined with operational efficiencies, resulted in record-breaking earnings,” said SIGA president & CEO Zane Hansen.
SIGA is nationally certified through the RG Check Program and contributes $2.25 million annually to the provincial First Nations Addictions and Rehabilitation Foundation (FNARF).
“More recently, BCLC [British Columbia Lottery Corporation] and RGC [Responsible Gambling Council] have been very supportive and have shared the best [RG program] practices with SIGA, so we could implement a very good responsible gaming program,” said Patricia Cook, vice president, corporate affairs, SIGA, to an audience at the recent Canadian Gaming Summit in Toronto.
SIGA has close to 1,400 employees.