National Lottery is down on its luck as sales drop 6.8pc
LAST year wasn't such a lucky one for the National Lottery, as its sales fell 6.8pc to €685.2m. It's the fifth year in a row that its sales have declined, as consumers dealt with the impact of austerity budgets.
The company said that it had experienced a challenging retail environment, but pointed out that 62pc of all adults still play its games on a regular basis.
Revenue from sales of tickets for the main Lotto draws comprised 45pc of all turnover. Sales of Lotto tickets totalled €229.5m, with Lotto Plus sales at €67.9m and Lotto 5-4-3-2-1 sales of €13m.
Scratch card sales provided a rare bright spot, with sales increasing 2.5pc to €167.7m as punters took their chances on scooping a top prize.
The lottery firm blamed the overall slide in sales on the lack of any big jackpot rollovers in both the Lotto and Euromillions.
Players shared €382.7m in prizes last year. In 2013, the average Lotto jackpot value was just over €4m, 4.8pc lower than in 2012. There were two jackpot wins over €10m during the year while 23 players became millionaires. One person also won €94m in the Euromillions.
Sales of tickets for the Euromillions declined by over 10pc last year to €117.8m.
The company's operating expenses fell 6.5pc to €96.6m last year, with commissions paid to agents the single biggest cost, accounting for 6pc, or €42.1m of total sales.
A consortium that includes An Post and the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan secured a licence this year to operate the National Lottery for the next 20 years. The Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan also owns lottery operator Camelot in the UK. That saw the consortium pay €405m to the government.
The National Lottery said it raised €206m for good causes last year. That's the lowest amount in eight years.