UK National Lottery Posts Record Sales After Shake-Up
Camelot Group revealed last week that the UK National Lottery generated record sales during the twelve months to March 31. Revenue amounted to £7.6 billion, up by £317 million (4%) compared to the previous year.
Compared to the first half of the year, Lotto sales grew by 14% in the six months to March 31. The improvement followed controversial changes to operator’s main National Lottery game, leading to far fewer, but much bigger jackpot wins.
Still, across the entire twelve-month period, revenue from draw-based lottery games fell £6.2 million to £4.6 billion.
“We’ve sold, we estimate, £450m more of Lotto than we would have done had we not made the changes in both 2013 and 2015. […] Lotto had been in decline for ten years actually prior to the change made in 2013,” Andy Duncan, Camelot UK chief executive said.
The decline in draw-based games, however, was more than compensated by the growing popularity of instant online games in Camelot’s GameStore, where sales surged by £323.6m to almost £3bn.
Camelot said sales through digital channels grew an impressive 53% over the course of the year.
Dutch Court: New Operator Lottovate Wrongly Denied Lottery License
The Netherlands Gaming Authority wrongly denied a lottery license to new entrant Lottovate, the District Court in Amsterdam found.
At present, four lottery licenses have been issued in the Netherlands, three of which are owned by the same company: Novamedia. The fourth license is currently owned by De Lotto, which recently merged with the Dutch State Lottery.
Although the Dutch government has been planning to remove some restrictions on the local lottery market and to allow new operators, these reforms would not be introduced until 2017 at the earliest. Until that time, new operators would be denied entrance to the Dutch market – a measure the Amsterdam Court now deems illegal.
Finland’s Veikkaus Increases Turnover, Profits
In 2015, Finnish state-owned lottery operator Veikkaus posted a 6.9% turnover growth and saw profits rise 3.2% to €537.1 million.
Instant win games grew the most in popularity, while 43% of Veikkaus’ total sales went trough digital channels. “From the European – and even from a wider international – perspective, the share is exceptionally high,” Veikkaus CEO Juha Koponen said.
In related news, Veikkaus’ game site is now even accessible to visually impaired customers.
IGT Announces Long-Term Extension Agreement with Sächsische LOTTO-GmbH
IGT announced that it has entered into a long-term extension agreement with World Lottery Association member Sächsische LOTTO-GmbH, to continue providing lottery technology and services, as well as implementing a central system upgrade.
In the company’s earnings call, IGT CEO Marco Sala also reported revenue and profit growth, adding:
“The most important piece of lottery news is the award of Italian Lotto concession to Lottoitalia, an IGT-led joint venture. The significance of this concession should not be underestimated. […] Securing the lotto award for the next 9 years is an important element of our business plan.”
Portugal’s Santa Casa to Apply for Sports Betting License
Portugal’s state lottery Santa Casa de Misericordia de Lisboa is planning to apply for an online sports betting license, reversing the public position the company staked out last year.
The operator also launched a new mobile lottery app.
Swiss Loterie Romande posts slight revenue decline, stable profits.
Canadian provincial lottery Loto-Québec extends its software deal with OpenBet, which includes the company’s new mobile portal solution.
Florida Lottery sales reached an all-time high in April.
Chinese lottery sales increased as well, in particular the country’s sports lottery which gained an impressive 16.6% y-o-y.
US Powerball players are still sensitive to jackpots as “low” as $300 million.
Over the last eight years, New Jersey lottery players failed to collect $318 million in winnings.
Greece will introduce a flat 35% tax on operator revenue.
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