Camelot is to lose its licence to run the UK’s national lottery after the Gambling Commission named Allwyn Entertainment, part of the Czech group Szaka, as preferred applicant for the new licence due to come into effect in 2024.
The Commission said its decision followed a “fair, open and robust competition which received four applications at the final stage.”
CEO Andrew Rhodes commented: “In its lifetime, the National Lottery has raised more than £45 billion 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.”
Allwyn has promised to “breathe fresh life” into the lottery, adding that its bid “was judged to be the best way of growing returns to good causes by revitalising the National Lottery in a safe and sustainable way.”
Camelot CEO Nigel Railton said he was “disappointed by today’s announcement, but we still have a critical job to do – as our current licence runs until February 2024.”
He added that the firm was “carefully reviewing the Gambling Commission’s evaluation before deciding on our next steps.”