Camelot announced it will be purchasing a lottery ticket this week in an effort to win back some much needed cash as ticket sales continue to fall.
The group has been running the National Lottery since 1994 and recently recorded a 6.3% fall in sales to £3.39 billion.
Camelots’ Chief Executive Mr. Jack Potts said, “People are definitely holding on to their cash at the moment. Maybe it’s because they are beginning to realise that at odds of 14 million to one, you’re more likely to find Elvis Presley teaching a group of orphaned kids to play the Djembe in a remote part of eastern Kenya than purchasing a winning ticket.”
Mr. Potts also stressed however, that the proliferation of competition from umbrella societies and aggressive bet-on-lottery firms was also having an effect.
“There’s no way in the world we could have predicted this. When we first won the contract to run the lottery back in 1994 our main competitor was the football pools, now every man and his dog owns a lottery of some sort. There’s bet-on-lotteries, there’s bet-on-bet-on-lotteries and recently we’ve started to see the emergence of small, one man band bet-on-bet-on-bet-on-lotteries. The whole business holds no certainty for us any more and it’s starting to feel like a bit of lottery,” he added.
Although Camelot has tried in the past to have all gambling banned except for the Lucky 7 scratch card, the company’s new strategy of walking into the local off licence and buying 20 Marlboro lights, a packet of Quavers and a £2 lucky dip represents a tipping point for the company.
“If the current situation continues, the chances of us making a profit will be comparable to that of winning the Euro Millions. We have therefore decided to do the lottery ourselves to try and win back some of the cash we have to hand out to people that do win by the absolute freak of circumstance,” Mr. Potts said.
Camelot are confident they will at least be able to win the £10 prize by using various board members’ birth dates for their number choices.
“You never know – it could be us. In fact, we do know it will be us because we own the machine and the balls and the tickets. We can guarantee that if we’re doing the lottery this week – it won’t be anyone else,” Camelot said in a statement.