The Greek State lottery started in 1862 and is the only one authorised in Greece. The lotteries are now run by the state or by private operators under licence from the Greek government. Since the Greek government received a 110 billion euro bail out from the European Union, it is hoping to raise around 3 billion euros by 2013 by selling state assets. In 2010 the state run lotteries generated 348 million euros and the Greek government may possibly get about 500 million from the sale of this particular asset.
The licence to run the Greek state lottery for the next twelve years is out to tender. The Greek government is engaged in a programme of privatisation to try to reduce public debt. The government plans to sell about 50 billion euros of state assets including the state lottery whose profits go to the state and also to good causes.
The Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund which was set up to manage this privatisation programme has named the three groups that will go forward to the second phase of the tender for the lottery licence. They are firstly, the Austrian lottery business Osterreichische Lotterian GmbH. The next group is a consortium of Sisal Spa, a lottery, online gaming and sports betting operator in the Italian gaming market and Damco Energy SA along with Damlot SA. The third group is made up of OPAP , the Greek Organisation of Football Prognostics SA, which operates the lottery and sports betting in Greece; Lottomatica Srl, an Italian gaming operator and technology provider; the Greek Intralot Lotteries LTD, which is a gaming systems, sports betting services and lottery operator and Scientific Games Global Gaming Sarl, a leading provider of lottery business solutions which also develops products for land based and online gaming.The three candidates to tender for the 12 year Greek lottery licence will receive instructions concerning their final bid offers at the end of the second stage from the Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund within the next month. This licence will give the exclusive right to run the state lotteries. The present state lotteries are the National Lottery, the European Lottery, the Popular Lottery, the New Year Lottery, the Housing Lottery, the Instant Lottery (scratch cards) and the licence also covers any future lottery but it does not include online lotteries.