Retailers ‘back in control’ as Post Office opts to end National Lottery deal in 2024

Post Office to end National Lottery relationship in 2024
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The Post Office (PO) has announced its relationship with the National Lottery will end on Jan. 31, 2024, coinciding with a switch in operators.

As reported by betterRetailing, the scheduled changeover in operations from Camelot to Allwyn on Feb.1, 2024, has caused the PO to re-evaluate its partnership with the National Lottery.

The move brings an end to a long-standing relationship enjoyed between the Post Office and the National Lottery, one which has seen billions of pounds raised for good causes via sales in PO branches.

In a letter sent to stores today (Feb.17), CCO Owen Woodley told employees: “You might be aware that from February 2024, there will be a new licensee running the lottery as Allwyn Entertainment will replace Camelot. This change gave us the opportunity to review our relationship with the lottery provider and consider if there is a simpler way for branches to provide lottery services.

“Having undertaken an extensive review, including taking into account feedback from postmasters that you’d prefer to work directly with the National Lottery, we have made the decision to stop being directly involved when our current contract ends.”

From Jan 31, 2024, the sale of National Lottery services will be a direct arrangement between Allwyn and PO franchisee

A spokesperson for Allwyn confirmed: “Allwyn will enable retailers who currently sit under the PO brand the opportunity to work directly with the National Lottery from February 2024 – the beginning of the fourth National Lottery licence. This is a positive step that puts retailers back in control of their relationship with the National Lottery and underlines Allwyn’s commitment to supporting shops and growing the retail channel.

“Currently, this network of retailers is only licensed to sell lottery tickets through their Post Office contract. Allwyn’s solution allows them to contract directly with Allwyn and benefit from our increased field support, incentive schemes and new technology.”

The PO has explained how the move will remove processing costs and give stores the opportunity to receive “all the sales commission”.

“We know that for those Post Offices that sell National Lottery tickets and scratch cards it is an important footfall driver,” added a PO spokesperson. “We are working closely with Allwyn so that there is a smooth transition process and we will provide Postmasters that sell National Lottery services with regular updates.

“In the meantime, it is business as usual for postmasters selling National Lottery tickets and scratch cards.”

The current operator of the National Lottery, Camelot, has emphasised this point, maintaining that there will be no disruption to operations until the changeover.

A spokesperson for Camelot said: “Nothing will change for these retailers in the short term, and there will be no changes to how they sell National Lottery products or to how players claim their prizes over the remainder of the current licence period. We are working closely with the PO and Allwyn on next steps, and will share any further information as soon as we can.

“We also understand that Allwyn will be engaging proactively with retailers in due course about its plans for the next licence.”