Virginia -The Virginia Lottery is celebrating an extraordinary year as it marks its 35th anniversary, achieving remarkable milestones and breaking records in Fiscal Year 2023 (FY2023).
The Virginia Lottery proudly announced that FY2023 brought in profits exceeding $867.4 million, all dedicated to funding the state's education programs. Notably, the sales from Virginia Lottery games reached an unprecedented $4.6 billion, surging past the $4 billion threshold for the very first time.
As of June 30, the state boasted 16 licensed sports betting operators, significantly expanding legal gambling opportunities for players. Adding to the excitement, three new Virginia casinos opened their doors during FY2023:
Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Bristol
Rivers Casino Portsmouth
Caesars Virginia in Danville
Virginia's K-12 education stands to gain the most from these record-breaking lottery sales. The more than $867.4 million generated represents an impressive 11% growth compared to the previous record of $779.6 million set in FY2022.Out of the $4.6 billion in sales, an unprecedented $3.4 billion was awarded to players as prizes, equating to nearly 74 cents of every dollar spent on Lottery products returning to lucky winners.
Kelly T. Gee, Lottery Executive Director, expressed her enthusiasm in an August 16 news release, saying,
"The Lottery's business is all about games and excitement, but we also support an important mission: generating funds for our K-12 public education. The unprecedented success we saw in Fiscal Year 2023 is positive news for all Virginians, regardless of whether they choose to play Lottery games."
Since 1989, the Virginia Lottery has contributed over $15.5 billion to K-12 schools in the state, further underscoring its dedication to education.
Highlights of Virginia Lottery's Fiscal Year 2023:
Three multi-state Mega Millions and Powerball jackpot runs, each exceeding $1 billion.
A surge in online lottery game popularity, with instant-win games available through the Lottery's mobile app and website experiencing a remarkable 61% increase, surpassing $2 billion in sales.
Online lottery games in Virginia issued $1.84 billion in prizes, accounting for 88.9% of player purchases.
Enhanced player convenience with innovations allowing for easier cashing of winning tickets online or in-store, along with the introduction of mobile ticket cashing, a first in the US lottery industry.
Additional FY2023 figures include:
Retailer commissions: $137 million
Operating expenses: $195 million
Unclaimed prizes to the Literary Fund: $12.6 million
Debt set-off collected: $8 million</p>
Largest Virginia prize won during the year: $156.7 million Powerball jackpot
Support to nearly 5,300 businesses across Virginia selling lottery tickets, including small "mom-and-pop" stores, which earned more than $137 million in sales commissions and bonuses.
The Virginia Lottery's FY2023 success reaffirms its commitment to providing entertaining games while making a substantial impact on education funding in the state. It's a year that will be remembered for its exceptional achievements, record-breaking sales, and remarkable contributions to Virginia's educational future.