Speaking at Prime Minister’s Questions, where he was standing in for Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, Dominic Raab has backed the positive impact of the National Lottery to continue following the decision of the UKGC to award the licence to Allwyn.
The decision to name Allwyn as its preferred candidate for the fourth National Lottery licence brought to an end the 30-year incumbency period of Camelot.
Ending what the UKGC labelled as a ‘fair, open and robust competition’, Allwyn came out on top due to its commitment to investing in the National Lottery and its expectation to deliver ‘growth and innovation’ across its products.
Raab was questioned on the firm’s links to Gazprom, however, he praised Allwyn governance as having ‘long-criticised’ Russian leader Valdimir Putin’s regime.
The Deputy Prime Minister stated: “That the National Lottery has done an incredible job in delivering to good causes, the fourth licence will better align the profits of the operator with good causes.”
On the changes to the UK lottery licensing, Andrew Rhodes, UKGC’s Chief Executive Officer, commented: “In its lifetime, the National Lottery has raised more than £45bn for good causes and is rightly seen as a great national asset.
“Our priority was to run a competition that would attract a strong field of candidates. Having received the most applications since 1994, it is clear that we’ve achieved just that.
“I am confident that the success of the competition will lead to a highly successful fourth licence – one that maximises returns to good causes, promotes innovation, delivers against our statutory duties, and which ultimately protects the unique status of the National Lottery. We look forward to working with all parties to ensure a smooth handover.”
Responding to the announcement, Camelot expressed its disappointment, asserting that it will ‘carefully review’ the Commission’s process in the coming days.
The firm’s CEO Nigel Railton remarked: “I’m incredibly disappointed by today’s announcement, but we still have a critical job to do – as our current licence runs until February 2024. We’re now carefully reviewing the Gambling Commission’s evaluation before deciding on our next steps.
“I’m enormously grateful to our 1,000-plus employees who have been unwavering in delivering record-breaking results during the current licence. And I know they remain absolutely determined to build on our four and a half years of successive sales growth – which has seen us achieve record sales in each of the last two years, resulting in the best-ever returns to Good Causes from ticket sales last year.”