– The Pennsylvania Lottery again sold more than $4 billion in games in the 2016-17 fiscal year, from which it generated more than $1 billion to benefit older Pennsylvanians and paid nearly $2.6 billion in prizes to winners.
“We’re very grateful for the support of our players, business partners and employees in making this the sixth consecutive year in which we surpassed $1 billion in proceeds to benefit older adults through a variety of important programs,” said Lottery Executive Director Drew Svitko.
Overall results of the fiscal year, spanning July 1, 2016 to June 30, 2017, include:
- Total game sales of $4,001,035,373 were off by $134.13 million from the previous fiscal year’s total. Unlike in 2015-16, when there was a world-record Powerball jackpot of nearly $1.6 billion, there were no record jackpots to drive sales last fiscal year.
- Net revenue generated for the Lottery Fund totaled $1,045,731,338; marking the sixth consecutive year that the Lottery generated over $1 billion to fund vital senior benefit programs. Reflecting lower sales, net revenues were off by $75.59 million year-to-year.
- The $2.59 billion in prizes paid meant nearly 65 cents of every sales dollar went back to players. A total of 84 players won prizes of $1 million or more during the fiscal year.
- More than 9,100 licensed Lottery retailers statewide, many of them small and family-owned businesses, earned more than $211.42 million in sales commissions.
Svitko noted that other state lotteries reported similar challenges last year, and added that new forms of competition have affected game sales in Pennsylvania.
“To responsibly grow sales and profits, we must modernize our 45-year-old business model and develop new ways to engage new customers,” Svitko said. “If we do not, it will become harder for us to adequately support the benefit programs on which so many older Pennsylvanians rely.”
For the 2016-17 fiscal year, by-category sales summaries were as follows:
- Sales of Scratch-Offs games totaled $2.73 billion, down by $66.04 million, or 2.4 percent, from the previous year. These games accounted for over 68 percent of all game sales.
- Sales of Draw Games – including the PICK family of games and Wild Ball, Treasure Hunt, Cash 5, Match 6, Millionaire Raffle, Cash4Life®, Powerball®, and Mega Millions® – totaled $1.22 billion for the fiscal year, which was $123.10 million, or 9.2 percent, below the previous year’s total. Of particular note:
- Multi-state game sales (Powerball®, Mega Millions® and Cash4Life®) fell by over $127 million, or 25.6 percent, from the prior year. Decreased Powerball and Power Play® sales accounted for $105.4 million of that decline.
- The new Wild Ball feature for the PICK family of games was a bright spot in this segment of the game portfolio, generating $23.44 million in new sales.
- Sales of Fast Play games, launched February 28, totaled over $55 million for the first few months of sales, reflecting the popularity of this new product category.
The Pennsylvania Lottery operates as a bureau within the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue. Financial statements are available at palottery.com, under “About Us & News,” then “Annual Sales & Benefit Reports.”
The Pennsylvania Lottery remains the only state lottery to direct all proceeds to programs
that benefit older residents. Since ticket sales began in 1972, it has contributed nearly $28 billion to fund property tax and rent rebates, transportation, care services, prescription assistance, and local services including senior centers and meals.
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