The Irish National Lottery has announced that its operating profit for FY2020 has increased by 64% on the previous year.
The lottery’s operating profits of €14.6m were boosted by a 4% rise in sales to €918.9m despite the COVID-19 lockdown closing most retail outlets.
In total, it paid out €529m to winners throughout the year, a 6% increase on the previous year, while €253.6m was distributed to worthy causes in Irish communities.
Due to the lockdowns, the lottery’s digital business grew throughout the year, but 85% of business still came from traditional retailers. The highest growing demographic for the online sales was amongst the over-50s.
The lottery’s CEO Andrew Algeo commented: “The digital business grew during the year, reflecting the choice customers made which was to stay at home and play their national lottery games online.”
Around 1.3m Irish people played the lottery on a regular basis throughout the year and 33 people won prizes which made them millionaires. For each Euro spent on the lottery, 57.6% was returned in prizes, 28.1% went to community causes and 6% went on retailers’ commission.
“The National Lottery was at the heart of Irish communities in 2020, a time when it mattered. Good Causes themselves and the communities which they support, faced extraordinary challenges in the year and so we were particularly delighted that the funds raised by the National Lottery for Good Causes grew to €254m,” added Algeo.
“That is a remarkable achievement by the staff and all stakeholders of the National Lottery in the face of real adversity, including particularly the retailers who supported our communities in so many vital ways.”