Lotnext wishes you a very happy New Year. As we can be sure that 2016 will be full of things that have never been, we, of course, will try and keep you up to date!
Norway Approves New Lottery Licenses
Last year, Norway amended its lottery regulations to allow for five new privately owned lottery licenses. At present, only state-owned operator Norsk Tipping is active in the Norwegian market.
Just before the close of 2015, the Norwegian gaming authority approved two new license applications by Norsk Pantelotteri AS/Norwegian Red Cross and Lottovate Limited NUF/UNICEF.
Six other applications were denied on account of “technical deficiencies,” but the applicants will have until January 18th, 2016 to appeal the decision.
If fewer than five applicants are ultimately approved, new tenders will be launched until all five licenses have been given out.
“El Gordo:” A Very Spanish Tradition
Every year, a few days before Christmas, young Spanish school children, decked out in school uniforms, sing out winning lottery numbers on live TV, culminating in “El Gordo” (The Fat One), the biggest winner in the drawing.
Although El Gordo nets individual winners just 400,000 euros, more than 1,000 tickets win it. A group of residents of the coastal tourist town of Roquetas de Mar will share at least 452 million euros. Inhabitants of neighboring Laujar won 320 million euros.
In 2015, Spain’s famous Christmas lottery paid out 2.24 billion euros, while Spaniards spent close to 2.6 billion euros on tickets, with some ticket buyers “waiting for hours in queues that snaked around city blocks.”
“Many then stayed glued to TV screens for hours more as schoolchildren plucked lottery balls from a rotating drum, singing out the resulting numbers in a chant that filled offices and homes.”
El Gordo and its accompanying traditions date back to 1812. Ticket sales were up compared to the previous year.
Italian Lottery Tender Launched
After considerable delays, the Italian government finally launched a tender for the country’s national lottery license.
For the last twenty years, this license has been held by Lottomatica, which has recently been renamed IGT.
The minimum bid for the new license, which will last nine years, will be 700 million euros. The tender’s deadline is March 16th, 2016.
NeoLotto CEO Discusses Lottery Innovation
Marcus Geiss, CEO of NeoLotto, offers some interesting pieces of advice to lottery operators.
Lottery providers, according to Geiss, have a “very, very unique product because they offer life-changing jackpots and that’s something that nobody else can offer.” Hence, they should be wary of rushing into other markets, such as sports betting and iGaming:
“My advice to the lottery operators is to really focus on the lottery product. Don’t start to enter into competition with all the sports books, poker and casino providers because it’s really a difficult business. There is already a lot of competition and I think that’s not what the lottery operators are good at.”
Traditional lottery operators, however, should think about offering online and mobile channels to sell their products. Private operators should be given a “chance to become an online interactive resellers, so then you have more point of sales, more revenue, more competition, [and] more innovation.”
A multi-state jackpot scam is undermining consumer confidence in the US lottery industry.
The Spanish government extends a current agreement with ONCE allowing for foreign ticket sales until 2021.
While the Massachusetts State Lottery wants online sales, social gaming and daily fantasy sports, the Missouri Lottery is introducing bacon-scented scratch card tickets.
Intralot makes a move into the Kenyan sports betting business.