The Virginia Lottery has seen growth in both online sales and retail sales during the pandemic this fiscal year, while other gambling options in the state have been closed.

The company’s ticket sales have increased by around 36% to $181.5m in the first three months of the fiscal year, compared with the same period in 2019.

The reason behind this increase was largely down to the General Assembly giving the go-ahead to internet sales this year. However, traditional retail vendors sales have increased by 13% as well.

The lottery’s profits increased by around 12% to $27.4m after operations surged at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.

Citizens in Virginia were left with lottery tickets as the only gaming option, as other gambling facilities, including Rosie’s historical horse racing emporiums and retail-based skill games, closed their doors.

Virginia Lottery Director Kevin Hall said when discussing the figures with the Senate Finance & Appropriations Committee that the company is ‘very pleased’ with their performance this fiscal year so far.

He said: “We were very pleased to see what we consider to be a solid performance. This year we’ll see probably the most dramatic expansion of lottery responsibilities since we were created 32 years ago.”