Member Login    

The Lotteries of Australia

Published on: 06/11/2013

While most of Europe developed its gambling laws and regulations following the models of the major Italian cities (Primarily Venice, but also Rome and Genoa), Australia formed its own practices independently. Most of the lotteries are state owned and controlled, with two of the largest ones being Lotterywest, which operates in the West of Australia, and Intralot Australia, covering Tasmania and Victoria.

For much of the time the lotteries operate with their own states, with tickets for a particular game only being available within that area. Occasionally though the lotteries work together, staging lavish multi state, even nationwide games. With the prize funds pooled together, the jackpot can reach spectacular proportions in these lotteries!

The largest lottery provider is the Tatts Group Limited, a public listed company based within Victoria. This Tasmanian group is most well known for the famous “Tatts” brand. The group has an impressive heritage, and was founded back in 1891, making it one of the longest running Australian companies. Back in the late nineteenth century it was named Tattersall’s, and its original founder, one George Adams, made his fortune by having the initiative to organize a lucrative sweepstake for the public on the Sydney Cup.

The Tasmanian Government was very impressed by George Adams’s business acumen, and the success of Tattersall’s; for this reason they asked him to organize a lottery for some of the properties of the Van Diemen Bank. It was hoped that the funds raised would help the struggling bank from failing completely. The lottery Adam’s created certainly helped ease some of the bank’s finances, and likely contributed to averting the disaster which would have occurred if the bank had gone into liquidation.

In 1972 there was the very first television screening of a lottery – the Tattslotto was another feature of the Tatts Group, and one of its most successful games. This group certainly doesn’t have a monopoly on the Australian gaming scene though - SA Lotteries covers a large portion of south Australia. Founded in 1967, the company stated its intention to “be of as much benefit the community of South Australia as possible, through responsible promotion and conduct of successful lotteries.” To most Australians SA Lotteries are known by their strong association with the South Australian National Football League. This affiliation lets them run the lucrative Australian Soccer Pools, an immensely popular lottery, played by most families throughout the country.

Yet another lottery catering to the Australian appetite for chance based games is NSW Lotteries. Another company with a long history, NSW was founded in New South Wales in the 1930’s. It has the claim to organizing the very first Australian nationwide lottery: OZ Lotto. This held its first draw in 1994, to one of the biggest television audiences in the country’s history. Two years later NSW launched the powerball lottery.

In a country as large as Australia distribution of any product can be a problem. One of the biggest gaming distributers is Oz Lotteries, which puts out via the Internet lottery products for numerous companies. TMS New South Wales and TMS Global Services Pty Ltd are just two if its biggest clients. Even if you haven’t heard of either of these companies you have very likely purchased one of their products: they sell to more than half a million customers, in over forty countries.

The biggest ever lottery win in Australia was a mind boggling A$106,549,984! A pair of lucky people shared this stupendous amount in June 2009, when they picked all seven of the forty five numbers correctly on the OZ Lotto Division 1. Simply selecting seven numbers for such a great reward might sound relatively easy, but please consider the odds for this are odds of 1 in 45,379,620!

Published on: 06/11/2013 © Bet Bind