Ontario Lottery and gaming companies are facing a difficult time as Prime Minister Doug Ford recently scolded them for paying bonuses to executives. Approximately 450 individuals in executive positions are eligible for bonuses linked to their day-to-day work in 2019 and will pack them despite unprecedented situations including layoffs, closed casino complexes and revenue losses.
The lockdown, which began in mid-March, hit the gaming sector in Canada and Ontario, as all offline casino venues had to close for business and wait for better days. This included all casinos and game halls overseen by the Ontario Lottery and gaming company. Revenue losses from these closures are expected to exceed C$200 million.
At the moment, it is difficult to pinpoint certain figures that could reflect Crown Corporation’s loss of game revenue over the past five months. It could easily exceed 200 million Canadian dollars. There are also thousands of individuals involved in casino venues that have been fired to help run Ontario Lottery and Games Corporation.
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While all this was happening, it became clear that the Crown Company had given about 450 executives the bonuses they deserved through their work. Mr. Ford pointed out that this is an unfair measure that does not correspond to the overall situation in the country and in the provinces. Executives earned just over C$100,000 in 2019 and deserve additional payments.
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Tony Beatonty, head of external communications at the Ontario Lottery and gaming company, noted that the payments were linked to personal performance during 2019, and that the crown company must fulfill its obligations. Bittonty did not disclose the size of the bonuses paid to OLG executives. Mr. Ford pointed out that about 15,000 individuals are still waiting for the day to return to work.
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The Crown Corporation, which oversees the game in Ontario, also pointed out that bonus payments are obligations to be fulfilled, or else lawsuits will inevitably be filed. Executives will inevitably demand additional payments that they can receive. Ford said careful consideration of the statewide situation should have been made.
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He also made it clear that executives could receive bonuses next year or at least until life returns to normal speed. Treasury Secretary Rod Phillips is looking into Crown Company in the near future. You can remember in May, the government lent 500 million Canadian dollars to game leaders. This amount was required to support OLG’s operating expenses along with its contractual obligations.
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Such support was inevitable because the unprecedented situation was slowly taking a toll on the Crown Company. Last week, the company said its estimated earnings fell to C$600 million, despite earlier this year’s estimate of C$809 million.