Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Lotto loss hits agents, by James Campbell - Herald Sun - 1st March 2009

Documents leaked to the Sunday Herald Sun reveal the dire plight of Intralot's lotto agents.

Hundreds of documents show that between the end of September last and January, 204 of the company's 769 agents - who each paid between $8000 and $10,000 for their licences - lost money each week selling the company's products.

Another 196 agents each made less than $22 a week from selling Intralot's Keno, Lucky Lines, Bingo and scratchies.

The worst performing product was Lucky Lines, which averaged only $44 a week across all the agencies. Sales of Bingo have also been a disaster for the company, with agents averaging only $53 in sales each week.

The best performer was the company's scratchies, which averaged $1287 in sales.

The documents show many agencies went weeks without selling a single Lucky Lines, Bingo or Keno ticket.

The revelations come as a group of lotto agents is considering taking legal action against the Greek gambling giant.

"We've spoken to lawyers and are working out our next step," an agent said yesterday.

Intralot's Australian chief John Katakis said on Thursday that two-thirds of the company's agents were now making money.

But Lotto Agents Association of Victoria chief Peter Judkins rejected the claim, saying the Sunday Herald Sun's figures were consistent with what his members had been telling him.

"They appear to be in line with the anecdotes we've been hearing," he said.

"There are approximately 300 to 400 retailers who are nowhere near covering their costs."

Rebecca Harrison, a spokeswoman for Gaming Minister Tony Robinson, said he met regularly with stakeholders.

"In a meeting with LAAV this week, the minister noted agents' concerns about Intralot's performance," she said. (Credit: Herald Sun)

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