– Maltco Lotteries Ltd through one of its major and popular games, U*BET will be the official sponsor for this year's edition of the U*BET National Sports Awards (Ghazliet Sportivi Nazzjonali). This was announced during a Press Conference organized by the Sports Journalists Association (Ghaqda Gurnalisti Sportivi), held on Thursday 16th January 2014.
– On January 19, the Illinois Lottery will update the add-on feature called plus FIREBALL so that a numbered plus FIREBALL is drawn as part of every Pick 3 and Pick 4 drawing. This change will improve a player's chance to win a prize and will give players the chance to turn non-winning tickets into winners. The Pick 3 and Pick 4 base games and prizes will remain the same, as will the drawing schedule (seven days a week, twice a day) and ticket prices (start at 50 cents).
Betradar, the unique one-stop provider for betting and gaming operators worldwide, will be attending ICE Totally Gaming 2014, held at ExCeL Centre in London, from 04.02.2014 until 06.02.2013.
—The Norwegian national lottery, Norsk Tipping is the first operator to use Playscan on VLT's as well as on all their old and new online-games. The player can access Playscan through both web and mobile. This takes consumer protection to the next level.
La Française des Jeux (FDJ) recorded a 1.8% increase in stakes collected in 2013, up to €12.35 billion from €12.14 billion in 2012. Sales in the physical network (96.7% of total sales) rose at a similar level (1.7%) while Internet sales grew at a faster pace, up by 5.5% to €410 million. FDJ's 2013 results reflect the strength of a gaming model that continues to attract the French public, with 27.1 million players. The main pillars of this public gaming model continue to be its local presence, through 33,400 retailers, and the constant principles that have underpinned its success over the past 80 years: responsible innovation, an equal chance for all and redistribution. => A gaming model that benefits all stakeholders Redistribution to players, retailers and the community accounted for more than 95% of stakes collected. Winnings paid out to players once again increased, up by 2.5%, i.e. €200 million more than in 2012, reaching a total of €8.07 billion or 65.4% of stakes collected compared with 64.9% in 2012. Contributions to the public interest exceeded €3 billion, of which €230 million in favour of sport for all. Revenues distributed to local retailers amounted to €621 million, 5.7% more than in 2012 corresponding to an increase of 8.4% per point of sale. => Popular brands enjoyed by 27.1 million playersFrench players took a pragmatic approach to gaming in 2013. The number of players increased from 26.3 million in 2012 to 27.1 million in 2013 while the average weekly stake declined slightly, down from €8.9 in 2012 to €8.8 in 2013. Given a stronger increase in winnings (2.5%) than in stakes (1.8%), gaming expense per player was down by 2.6% to €3 a week. => Games combining tradition and new features, accessible to allPlayers focused on games rooted in gaming tradition as can be seen by the stable performance of the LOTO® (which moved back to second place in FDJ's games), with a particular focus on scratch cards, which are simple but appealing as can be seen from the success of the illiko® range launched in 2012 (of which the leading game Cash remains FDJ's number one game), and on sports betting for the general public (the ParionsSport betting game is now the fourth most popular game). Lottery stakes collected totalled €10.70 billion (86.7% of sales), stable relative to 2012 despite the small number of exceptional events: two Fridays on the 13th versus three in 2012, no symbolic dates such as 12-12-12 and no lengthy Euro Millions cycle in 2013 compared with three in 2012. => Accessible sports bettingSports betting, boosted by an eventful year, exceeded €1.65 billion in sales (13.3% of total sales), up by 14.4% compared with 2012, mainly through the retail network (95.4% of sales). This offer appealed to a greater number of players, 700,000 more, while average stakes decreased by 10%. This trend shows the success of an accessible and modern sports betting offer, ten years after FDJ introduced fixed-odds betting in France and subsequently overhauled its sports pools offer, Loto Foot (the original sports Loto had been created in 1985). => A responsible and committed operator2013 also featured a strengthening of FDJ's Corporate Social Responsibility policy, which was restructured around five strategic directions and close to 50 action plans. "Responsible gaming" continues to be the central theme, whether in terms of support for recreational gaming, prevention of underage gaming and training of retailers. The percentage of disabled workers employed by FDJ reached 6.5% in 2013. The budget allocated to the FDJ Foundation was doubled on the occasion of its 20th anniversary and the start of a new five-year period (€18 million over five years). In particular, FDJ has become one of the leading partners of the French Red Cross. FDJ also renewed its partnership with the French Olympic Committee (CNOSF), and introduced an Integrity and Social component into all its sports partnerships (LFP, FFHB, FFBB and FFR). The FDJ Foundation contributes, for instance, to the "Supporters de l'emploi" jobs support initiative launched by LFP and all the professional football clubs. Vigéo's assessment of the group's CSR policy resulted in a strong improvement in its extra-financial rating, which was raised to 76/100 versus 69/100 in 2011, the strongest rating assigned to a French company by Vigéo. => OutlookTo mark the tenth anniversary of Euro Millions in 2014, FDJ has revived the spirit of the National Lottery by launching "My Million" as from 4February 2014. This draw, which will complement the Euro Millions draw, will guarantee two millionaires a week in France, one at each draw on Tuesdays and Fridays, among Euro Millions ticket holders in France. The World Football Cup from 12 June to 13 July will undoubtedly stimulate sports betting and draw the interest of new players. In 2013, the group's Board of Directors adopted a strategy plan for 2013-2018 which, in keeping with its model of responsible gaming for the general public, is aimed at strengthening its proximity to French players, continuing its digital development in response to the growing digitalisation of the French public with the aim of increasing sales to at least €1 billion, launching innovative new games and making the most of its know-how at international level. For Christophe Blanchard-Dignac, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Française des Jeux "the strength of our business in 2013 shows how attached French players are to a gaming model that they feel close to, and illustrates the daily commitment of our 33,400 retailers. The group and its 1,700 employees continue to strive to offer French players a constantly renewed, recreational and responsible gaming experience. Ten years after the launch of Euro Millions, and in response to demand for wider distribution of winnings, the new 'My Million' game, due to be launched in a few weeks, will contribute to creating more than 200 new lucky millionaires in France each year."
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