Throughout the Christmas season, Lottery Daily will be revisiting some of the biggest stories of the lottery business world from the past year. This edition will be looking at stories from November and December.

November

Sazka announces Sir Keith Mills as Chairman for National Lottery bid

Pan-European lottery operator Sazka Group announced the appointment of Sir Keith Mills as its Bid Chair of the UK team for the Fourth National Lottery Licence Competition.

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Lottery division shows growth amid tough Q3 trading for Scientific Games

The Lottery arm of Scientific Games Corporation delivered a bright mote amid an otherwise gloomy set of Q3 results this week, with COVID driving down revenue to $698m versus $855m year-on-year.

In its trading statement, the company described its third quarter results as being adversely impacted by the COVID-19 disruptions, primarily in the Gaming business unit during the quarter, affecting comparability to the prior year period.

However, its Lottery, SciPlay and Digital businesses grew in the quarter, highlighting, said SG, the strategic investments it had made in the digital space and the breadth of its portfolio. All three increased AEBITDA by 10% or more with its Digital business up nearly 50% and SciPlay ahead by more than 50% from the prior year.

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‘Record’ digital sales drive Camelot UK growth during H1 2020/21

Camelot UK Lotteries Limited recorded its second-best ever National Lottery ticket sales for the first six months of the 2020/21 financial year, despite an 18% hit to sales at the start of the pandemic.

Publishing figures for the period 1 April – 26 September 2020, the company achieved sales of £3,854.1m, a decrease of £67.2m on the corresponding period last year, showing resilience despite the disruption caused by the coronavirus.

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December

UK Government to raise National Lottery age limit to 18 by October 2021

Oliver Dowden, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) announced that the UK Government will be raising the National Lottery age limit from 16 to 18.

The government confirmed the move – designed to help protect young people from gambling-related harm – in a statement released alongside news from the DCMS that it had launched a review of the Gambling Act 2005.

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ITHUBA and Szrek2Solutions confirm validity of surprising South Africa national lottery result

South African Lottery operator ITHUBA and Random Number Generator (RNG) vendor Szrek2Solutions confirmed the validity of the surprising national lottery draw result which took place at the start of December.

Since 2016, Szrek2Solutions has provided ITHUBA with its Trusted Draw RNG system for automated operation of the draw games. The operator moved its lottery draws from the traditional ball machines to digital draws, in line with industry standards and moving with innovation.

On December 1, 2020, a surprising draw result raised attention world-wide, as that night’s Powerball draw was: 8, 5, 9, 7, 6, and the Powerball number was 10. When sorted from lowest to highest, these numbers created a sequence 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10 which raised general suspicion of foul play.

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European Lotteries teams with ECA and WoTA to fight illegal online gambling

The European Lotteries Association (EL) joined forces with the European Casino Association (ECA) and the World Tote Association (WoTA) to fight illegal online gambling and embrace the foreseen Digital Services Act package.

The EL, the ECA and the WoTA together in an alliance against illegal gambling welcomed the European Commission’s plans to modernize the rules applicable to the online environment.

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