Not With A Bang But A Whisper, Allwyn Takes Over UK Lottery Hoping Everyone’s A Winner

With a fanfare of anonymity afforded a jackpot winner who doesn’t want the publicity, Allwyn today formally took control of the UK Lottery, the biggest prize in British gambling.

Allwyn–a company formerly known as Sazka, which is effectively owned by Czech billionaire Karel Komarek, who had to cut his ties with the Russia Kremlin-owned Gazprom energy company before he could proceed with his UK Lotto purchase–has adopted a softly-softly approach to the voracious news cycle since being awarded the new, fourth, lottery licence by the Gambling Commission 16-months-ago amid some controversy.

The Camelot Group, who had run the National Lottery since its inception in 1994, did not “go quietly into the good night” when they lost control of Europe’s richest gaming prize.

For months they fought a bitter guerrilla legal campaign in a bid to overturn the licensing ruling, asserting all manner of skullduggery allegedly played by Allwyn to seize the lottery crown.

Allwyn, for its part, kept a low profile and dealt with the matter by the simple expedient of buying Camelot, and its affiliated operations, from its parent, the Canadian Ontario Teachers’ Pension Fund, for an undisclosed sum in November, 2022.

The company’s top pitch in beating-off competition from a bevy of big players; among them porn king Richard Desmond’s Northern and Shell media holding company and Sisal, operator of Italy’s national lottery; was a stated determination to build on and expand the lottery’s contribution to charities and good works.

In 30-years, the UK Lottery has contributed some £48 billion (US$60.63bn) to around 700,000 arts, community, heritage and sports projects.

Media Guru

Allwyn, which also runs lotteries in Austria, Cyprus, Greece and Italy, also aims to expand its retail footprint and further strengthen Safe and Responsible Gambling initiatives.

And in further indication of its non-confrontational corporate strategy the group has brought PR guru Steve Parkinson, once of Bauer Media, onboard as Brand and Marketing Director.

And it has defanged another potentially debilitating legal wrangle, this one with Camelot stalwart, IGT, by agreeing a new lottery continuity partnership with the technology giant.

“Starting today, we begin the important process of enhancing The National Lottery for the benefit of future generations,” affirmed Andria Vidler, who was appointed CEO of Allwyn UK in July last year.

“It will be a journey that takes time but will be marked by many incredible milestones along the way, offering us more opportunities to reflect on all the good that comes from it.

“This year is particularly significant, coinciding with the Olympic and Paralympic Games and the 30th birthday of The National Lottery.

“We want the birthday year, and the decade that follows, to be filled with unmissable and unforgettable moments for an increasing number of people in a variety of ways.”

From “It Could Be You!” to “Will You Be Next?”, the Great British Lottery rollover has been imperceptible at best.

And for the moment that’s just the way that Allwyn likes it.

Everyone’s a winner.

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