- »Lotterywest Appoints CEO and Sees Record Jackpot
Lotterywest Appoints CEO and Sees Record Jackpot
It seems like an exciting time for Lotterywest in Western Australia. The organization has an official CEO in Susan Hunt, who has served as acting CEO for several years. And the amount of lottery jackpot money is climbing to record levels, resulting in superb sales numbers and revenue.
Making Hunt Official
Earlier this month, Premier Mark McGowan of Western Australia made a long-awaited announcement. Susan Hunt PSM would officially take on the role of chief executive officer of Lotterywest and Healthway.
Hunt is no stranger to these positions. She began as acting CEO for Lotterywest in July 2017 and Healthway in January 2018. But the offer was made, she accepted, and she will now serve in these roles in an official capacity for five years. Her terms for both positions begin on September 30, 2019.
Her background includes a long stint as the head of the Zoological Parks Authority at the Perth Zoo. During that time, she received the Public Service Medal in 2010. And the same year that she departed, she also won the Institute of Public Administration Australia Patron’s Award.
Hunt is also a Fellow of the Australian and New Zealand School of Government.
Since her time at Lotterywest began in 2017, Hunt has worked to make changes to the company that would enhance community grants. She also increased the returns for the WA community through grants, especially after the new law to ban online lottery betting organizations.
Going forward, Hunt is charged with launching new initiatives that will further boost retailer commissions, increase sales, and create further long-term sustainability for the network of small retail businesses that partner with Lotterywest.
McGowan called her a “highly accomplished public sector leader with a wealth of experience.” He noted valuable and significant contributions she has made to Lotterywest and Healthway since her takeover as acting CEO, and he looks forward to seeing the future under West’s leadership.
“Her vast experience has equipped her to lead her new teams cohesively,” McGowan added, “build strong foundations at both entities, and focus on projects and initiatives to better benefit the Western Australian community.”
Long History of Lotto
Lotterywest has a long history in WA. It was first established as the Lotteries Commission in 1932. It currently operates under the Lotteries Commission Act of 1990 as a statutory authority of the WA government.
Through partnerships with retailers, Lotterywest sells a variety of lottery tickets and scratchers tickets. The revenue from ticket sales is separated so that some goes to the prize money, some to the retailers and Lotterywest for operating costs, and the other third goes back to the WA community. This happens in the form of distributions to health services, nonprofit community groups, local government authorities for charitable purposes, and the government departments pertaining to sport/recreation and culture/arts.
Transparency is priority for Lotterywest. Details of all of its revenue distributions are available on the website.
For example, Lotterywest showed a record amount of $985 million in sales during its 2018-2019 fiscal year. Of that amount, Lotterywest showed that $736 million went back to the WA community in prizes and community grants.
Setting New Lottery Jackpot Records
Powerball is one of the biggest lottery jackpot sellers for Lotterywest. Every Thursday night, Lotterywest chooses the winning Powerball numbers.
Players simply purchase a ticket with numbers either chosen specifically or generated by the machine. They choose seven numbers plus the Powerball number.
Each Thursday, seven numbers are drawn from 35 possible in the “A” barrel for the main numbers, and the Powerball is picked from the 20 options in the “B” barrel. If there is no winner, the prize rolls over and increases for the next draw. Each beginning jackpot is $3 million.
It is not uncommon to see jackpots awarded in the tens of millions of dollars. But this week, Powerball set a new record when the jackpot maxed out at $150 million. The last record was set earlier in 2019 when the jackpot hit $107.6 million.
Lotterywest spokesperson James Mooney had hoped for a local lottery jackpot winner. “This Powerball jackpot is a new national record, and we’re hoping for a Western Australian winner, or even better, a WA syndicate to take out Division one.”
Mooney also noted that the nine-week Powerball excitement added up to more than $25 million for the WA community.
The odds of winning the ultimate jackpot were one in 134,490,400.
Even so, three Australians did pick the correct numbers this week. None of them were from Western Australia, but WA Division Two did sell one ticket worth nearly $126,000. Customers in WA bought more than one million tickets for the drawing.
Two of the winners were from Queensland and the other from New South Wales. They will split the jackpot to each take $50 million.