The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has this morning confirmed that it has extended the timetable of the Fourth National Lottery Competition by a further 10-week period.
The decision will see the winner of the multi-billion UK government contract set to be announced in February 2022, as the Commission withdraws its original forecast of aiming to announce the competition’s winner by September/October 2021.
The extension has been applied to ‘Phase Two’ of the competition, following representations made by applicants and following feedback on ‘Phase One’ procedures.
The competition’s amended timetable will now feature a four-week ‘application stage’ and a further six-week period of bid evaluations
“These changes will provide the opportunity for applicants to further refine their proposals and for the Commission to evaluate.” read the UKGC statement.
As a result of changes, the UKGC has extended the current Third National Lottery Licence by a further six months to help facilitate a transition between operating firms.
The winner of the Fourth National Lottery competition will therefore begin operating their licence from February 2024.
The competition has attracted individual bids from Allwyn (SAZKA), Northern & Shell Group, Sisal and Sugal & Damani (bid retired) as the rivals seeking to displace Camelot UK as the operating company of the National Lottery.
Overseeing the competition, last week DCMS launched an inquiry to evaluate and examine its handling of the ‘competition process’ of the National Lottery’s tender.
“Our job is to run the best competition we possibly can – one that is open and fair and results in the best outcome for players and good causes. We want to appoint a licensee that can build on the National Lottery’s legacy and find new opportunities for a sustainable and successful future.” The UKGC concluded.