In today’s dynamic realm of iGaming, presented by trustworthy online casino websites like, modern developers and investors owe their success to visionary predecessors. As the Internet emerged in the mid-1990s, a few entrepreneurs recognized the innovation’s potential. Using their innate skills, they founded enterprises that reaped billions of dollars as rewards for themselves as well as for others. Who were these pioneers of the casino online field who paved the way for others? Interestingly, Canada emerged as a hub for gambling innovators, nurturing influential people who fueled an $80 billion global industry. Let’s learn more about these visionaries who exerted their best efforts many years ago for us to enjoy the current level of perks every reputable online casino in Austria offers!

Calvin Ayre

Calvin Ayre was born in Saskatchewan, Canada, to farmer parents and went on to create a modest online incubator in Vancouver. He quickly transformed it into a software support company for iGaming, and while he licenced some of his products to other casinos, he recognized that real money could only be gained by running his own gaming operations, that is why he launched Bodog. Ayre’s rise was rapid, and he quickly found himself enjoying a luxury lifestyle of yachts, models, and parties. In 2006, he appeared on the front cover of “Forbes” magazine’s Billionaire edition, establishing himself as the poster boy for a wealthy lifestyle.

Randy Blumer

Born in Canada, Randy Blumer cultivated his poker skills during his 6th grade in Germany, where his family had relocated due to his father’s work. Returning to Canada for studies at the University of Alberta, Blumer increased his income by engaging in various wagers, with poker becoming his favourite pursuit. 

Armed with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering, he joined the Canadian Navy, ultimately achieving the rank of Lieutenant Commander. However, driven by his true passion for poker and gambling, Blumer decided to retire early. He established Planet Poker, introducing its inaugural real-money game in February 1998. Blumer is widely credited with introducing poker to the world of Internet-based casino games.

Mitch Garber

Mitch Garber, a Montreal native who was educated as a lawyer, is our third Canadian on the list of Internet gambling pioneers. Garber left the legal profession after nearly a decade to pursue other business interests. Before joining the investment entities supporting Caesars Entertainment‘s new digital gaming and entertainment initiative in 2009, he ventured into the industry of online payment processing. Garber’s engagements with gambling authorities provided him with in-depth knowledge of the industry’s dynamics. His extensive knowledge encompasses both the industry’s present and past.

Ian Sherrington

In the 1980s, Ian Sherrington pursued computer science studies in London. He merged his gambling passion with his computer expertise, eventually creating the first Internet sportsbook. Sherrington, a perennial innovator, ventured further by launching a micro-gaming online casino. Recognising the importance of payment integration, he incorporated PayPal and Neteller into his services. Having received his first virtual bookmaker’s license in 1998, Sherrington continued his journey, moving from London to the Isle of Man and, subsequently, Antigua. He remains at the forefront of technology, culminating in the establishment of the Quanta Blockchain Lottery.

Martin Moshal

Dubbed “Cyber-Sol” in tribute to Sol Kerzner, the entertainment and hospitality tycoon, Martin Moshal of South Africa stands as the force behind iGaming software and an array of patents. In collaboration with Roger Raatgever, his business partner, Moshal crafted pioneering online software for gambling games. In 1998, their venture, Microgaming, announced Cash Splash, an online slot with a progressive jackpot—a groundbreaking concept at the time. 

Its triumph led to multiple prominent operators choosing Microgaming as their casino software provider. By the mid-2000s, a significant number of operators had adopted Microgaming’s products, which now included an extensive library of more than 800 casino games for all tastes. Presently, Moshal is engaged in venture capital initiatives and philanthropy, managing a scholarship program benefiting South African students.

Is It Only About the Internet?

So far, our article has featured only the stories of iGaming pioneers and visionaries. Since gambling exists not only on the Internet, we’d like to mention some influential names of those who played a significant role in the improvement of land-based casino gaming as well:

  • Benny Binion;
  • François Blanc;
  • Steve Wynn;
  • Sheldon Adelson

All of them contributed a lot to the industry and will definitely describe their achievements in future articles.

Step Into the Excitement: Explore the World of Online Casino Games Today!

We would not be able to play gambling games online now if our predecessors did not recognize and seize the possibilities. There would be no online betting, slots, casino table games, and other formats that we enjoy on computers and mobiles without their inventive technology, marketing talents, and capability to collaborate with others to influence the iGaming business’s future. 

So, if you haven’t already dabbled in the world of IiGaming, take the first step and start your quest.