Camelot UK Lotteries Ltd.

Address: Tolpits Lane WD18 9RN Watford United Kingdom
Phone: +44 19 23 42 50 00
Fax: +44 19 23 42 50 50/54 00
Chairman: Sir Hugh Robertson
Chief Executive Officer: Nigel Railton
Year Lottery Founded: 1994
# of Employees: 767
Sales FY 2019: £5.5 Billion GBP
Number of Points of Sale (POS): 53,396
Games Offered: Lotto, EuroMillions, Thunderball, Lotto HotPicks, EuroMillions HotPicks, Set For Life, National Lottery Instants.
Jurisdiction: United Kingdom

About Camelot UK Lotteries Ltd.

Camelot was formed as a consortium to bid for the National Lottery project. The major partners were International Computers Limited (ICL), supplying hardware, software, and systems integration expertise; Racal with responsibility for the communications network; and Cadbury Schweppes bringing experience in consumer marketing and knowledge of the world of corner-shop retailers. De La Rue brought knowledge of secure printing technology, and GTECH Corporation were brought in as the selected supplier of applications software. Staff were seconded from the partner companies, transferring to Camelot Group when the bid was won.

Senior executives such as Tim Holley were enticed to join the project by the promise of large bonuses if the bid was successful. This caused embarrassment later when the incoming Labour government, in particular Chris Smith, the Culture Secretary, publicly criticised Camelot and its executives for excessively lavish salaries and bonus payments.

The Camelot Group was awarded the National Lottery franchise in May 1994. It won the bid against Sir Richard Branson who proposed to create a not-for-profit structure, an idea that didn’t seduce the Gambling Commission.

The Camelot name is reflected in the actual lottery machines used in the National Lottery draw, which are named for characters, places, and objects in Arthurian Legend (GuinevereLancelotExcalibur, Arthur, etc.).

In 2004, the transnational lottery EuroMillions entered the UK lottery market.

Camelot’s third licence period started on 31 January 2009; the money given to good causes was increased, and retailers’ commission increased from 5% to 6%. The third licence is for a ten-year period with the option to extend by a further five years. In March 2009, Camelot announced a programme of redundancies to cut costs throughout the company.

In March 2012, the National Lottery Commission extended Camelot’s Licence by four years to 2023, on condition that Camelot deliver an additional £1.7 billion in lottery funding to good causes.

In October 2013, Camelot doubled the ticket price of its main National Lottery game, Lotto, to £2, with the aim of increasing ticket sales. Analysts noted that in the subsequent two-year period, funds raised for good causes by the National Lottery fell by £100 million

In November 2017, Nigel Railton was named CEO of the Camelot group in the midst of dramatic drops in lottery ticket sales. Nigel Railton had served as CEO interim since the departure of Andy Duncan in April 2017.

For the 2019 franchise renewal bid, the Camelot group could be bidding against billionaire Richard Desmond.

International development

In March 2010, Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan from Canada announced that it was buying Camelot for £389m.

In October 2013, Premier Lotteries Ireland, a consortium including the Camelot Group with An Post, won the licence to run Ireland’s lottery for 26 years.

In January 2018, the Camelot group became the new operator of the Illinois State Lottery in the United States. The state of Illinois was the first in the US to privatize its lottery system.