Virginia Lottery Sees Record Fiscal Year 2023 Sales And Profits

Written By Katarina Vojvodic on September 1, 2023
Broken Record With Cash Background and Virginia Lottery logo

The Virginia Lottery announced it had completed the best year in its 35-year history, smashing several records.

The Lottery announced that Fiscal Year 2023 (FY2023) profits came to more than $867.4 million, which went to the state’s education programs. Likewise, sales from Virginia Lottery games totaled a record-breaking $4.6 billion, exceeding the $4 billion mark for the first time.

By the end of the fiscal year on June 30, Virginia had 16 licensed sports betting operators. Moreover, players in the state saw more options for legal gambling during FY2023, as three Virginia casinos opened their doors:

  • Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Bristol
  • Rivers Casino Portsmouth
  • Caesars Virginia in Danville

Virginia’s K-12 education will benefit the most from record lottery sales

As mentioned, more than $867.4 million will go straight to the state’s education programs. The figure represents more than 11% growth over the previous record of $779.6 million set in FY 2022.

Of the $4.6 billion generated in sales, a record $3.4 billion went back to players in the form of prizes. It means nearly 74 cents of every dollar spent on Lottery products returned to players as prizes.

Lottery Executive Director Kelly T. Gee said in an Aug. 16 Virginia Lottery news release:

“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.”

In total, more than $15.5 billion has been generated for K-12 schools in Virginia through the Lottery since 1989.

Other Virginia Lottery highlights for Fiscal Year 2023

Among the unique highlights of the year were three multi-state Mega Millions and Powerball jackpot runs, each surpassing $1 billion.

What also contributed to this year’s business success was the popularity of playing Lottery games online, including instant-win games available through the Lottery’s mobile app or at Instant game sales went up 61%, going over $2 billion.

Online lottery games in Virginia issued $1.84 billion in prizes, representing 88.9% of the money players purchased.

Additionally, the Lottery introduced several player-focused innovations this year, making it easier for players to cash winning tickets online or in-store. Players can now also withdraw winnings from their account using a voucher that can be redeemed at Lottery retailers.

The mobile ticket cashing option, first introduced in the US lottery, allows players to scan and redeem winning tickets worth up to $5,000 directly into their online account using their mobile device.

A few other Virginia Lottery highlights for FY23 include the following figures:

  • Commissions earned by retailers: $137 million
  • Operating expenses: $195 million
  • Unclaimed prizes to the Literary Fund: $12.6 million
  • Debt set-off collected: $8 million
  • Largest Virginia prize won during the year: $156.7 million Powerball jackpot

Nearly 5,300 businesses across Virginia sell lottery tickets. Many include small “mom-and-pop” stores, which earned more than $137 million in sales commissions and bonuses.

Photo by PlayUSA
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Katarina Vojvodic

Katarina Vojvodic is a lead writer for PlayUSA who lives in Toronto. Vojvodic provides coverage of the US gambling industry with a focus on US online casinos. Previously, she covered Ontario’s online gambling industry for Vojvodic holds a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Belgrade. Outside working hours, she can be found near the water with her husband and their two kids.

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