Sir Keith Mills, Sazka Group’s Bid Chair of the UK team for the Fourth National Lottery Licence Competition, has applied pressure to current National Lottery operators Camelot.

Mills was appointed Bid Chair of the Pan-European lottery’s UK team for the Fourth National Lottery Licence Competition earlier this month, and he brings a wealth of experience to the position from his roles across sport, charities and business.

In a recent interview with the Evening Standard, he revealed that as bid chairman, he will be putting some of his own fortune behind Sazka, taking a minority stake if it wins the National Lottery contract.

He said: “This wasn’t a difficult decision. Sazka has a great track record of turning around lotteries in Europe and increasing the number of players and money to good causes. But it was their vision for the future of lotteries and the technology employed that convinced me to make this commitment.

“The new operator needs to win back the eight and a half million people who have stopped playing the lottery since 2012 as well as attract new players if the funding for the arts, heritage, sport and community sectors is to grow.”

Mills played a pivotal role in London’s successful bid to host the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and their successful staging.

For the past six years, he has chaired the Royal Foundation of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and is also Chairman of the Invictus Games, the international adaptive multi-sport event created by Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex.

Mills added that the National Lottery needs to change to keep up with consumer behaviour, especially in a post-COVID world.

He stated: “In a post-COVID world, charities and communities will depend even more on National Lottery funding and the lottery needs to change to reflect that. Consumer behaviour has dramatically changed over the past decade and lotteries need to keep pace with these changes as well as bring back the fun of playing whilst still ensuring player protection.”