The Lottery Commission’s statement that it had rejected Camelot and
given ’preferred bidder’ status to Richard Branson to run the national
lottery came as a surprise for journalists who are used to Government
announcements being leaked in advance.
Camelot was pilloried because of partner G-Tech’s apparent cover-up of a
software problem, which meant many smaller prize-winners did not receive
The Virgin boss was widely reported advising Camelot to ’bow out
gracefully’ (The Times, 25/8), rather than continue with its legal
challenge to the decision, even though AWI, his own partner, was
revealed as having failings in US state lotteries.
With his not-for-profit angle, Branson pledged to give ’the people of
Britain the Lottery they want’. The Independent commented, ’Sir Richard
couldn’t quite say he had won yet, but it was difficult to see how he
However, if the People’s Lottery is chosen, all eyes will be on Branson
to see if he can regild an image tarnished by Virgin Trains and other
recent brand extensions.
Analysis and commentary by Echo Research.
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