SEVERAL global lottery corporations have indicated their interest in the Irish national lottery licence after meeting Government officials from the Department of Public Expenditure.
GTech Corporation already has one foot in the door, as it supplies ticket terminals to An Post.
The company, which is owned by Italian group Lottomatica, operates dozens of state and national lotteries in the US, Europe and Asia.
UK lottery operator Camelot has also indicated it is engaging with Department of Public Expenditure officials in the "interested parties" process. Australian firm Tatts Group has also expressed an interest.
An Post, which has operated the National Lottery since it was established in 1987, has said it would explore several possible partnership options to finance its own bid.
Some €200m of the proceeds from any licence deal has been earmarked for a new national children's hospital.