Betting and gaming group Rivalry has made its debut in cryptocurrency and blockchain with the launch of its Rivalry Token set to go live in H2 2024.

The Co-Founder and CEO of Rivalry, Steve Salz, joined Steve McAllister on the Gaming News Canada Show to discuss the imminent release of the token.

Rivalry customers will be able to earn tokens through activity on the site which can then be used for boosting odds and participating in jackpots.

Salz explained that they developed the coin to improve Rivalry’s gamification and give people “reasons to show up every day that aren’t necessarily to wager”.

Salz also expanded on why crypto was chosen as the currency for Rivalry’s token.

“It’s an objectively better way of moving money in and out of services on the internet in every single way,” he explained. “There’s no downtime, no maintenance window, it’s instantaneous, there’s no middleman, the fees are lower, etcetera. It’s ubiquitous globally, you’re not doing payment providers in every single country for every single method one by one, you just turn one on and it works everywhere.”

The use of crypto by gaming operators is a relatively new concept as a result many regulators do not have legislation in place that allows crypto to be used as payment for gambling purposes. 

This is the case for Ontario, one of the jurisdictions Rivalry operates in, which means that customers in the province will be able to earn the “nuts” needed to get a Rivalry Token but as of yet won’t be able to use it for betting.

Staying on the topic of Ontario, the two Steves discussed the state of the Ontario gaming market given that April marked two years since the market opened.

Salz described the current situation as “stable” however he warned regulators that they needed to do more to make it worth operators getting licenses rather than operating as an unregulated operator.

Salz said: “You want to create advantages for the people that choose to get the licence because the reality is technology enables the ability to operate businesses [unregulated] and the customer experience is better. So customers are going to get the best product.

“This isn’t like an immediate threat tomorrow, but it’s going to be overtime on the long-term horizon. And we need to think about it that way that we’re [going to] create so many advantages that getting the licence creates so much competitive asymmetry because you’re so heavily supported within the market that you’re actively trying to seek customers from that you’d be silly not to get the licence. That’s not the current mentality.”

Salz was also questioned on whether Rivalry would move into Alberta if the market became regulated however he said this wasn’t something he could envision Rivalry doing. He added that the only Canadian jurisdiction he could see Rivalry moving into if it became regulated would be Quebec

Near the end of the show, Salz revealed more about why crypto was an attractive prospect for Rivalry. 

He explained that despite being from a similar demographic customers acquired through crypto tend to have a higher disposable income to spend on gambling compared to those acquired through esports, which is another core part of the Rivalry offering.

Rivalry Token designed to “improve gamification”