PA Lottery Expansion Generates $155 Million In Sales For First Six Months

Written By Kim Yuhl on December 4, 2018 - Last Updated on April 4, 2019
pile of lotto tickets

The Pennsylvania Lottery has plenty to celebrate as it looks back at 2018. March marked the 46th anniversary of its first drawing, and for the seventh year in a row, the PA Lottery contributed over $1 billion to benefit older Pennsylvanians.

October’s gaming expansion law extended the Lottery’s reach, through online lottery games and other products. It has been over six months since the launch of Keno, with online lottery launching soon after that. The numbers so far are impressive.

When all is said and done, the gaming expansion law helped the Lottery usher in three new products:

  • iLottery online instant games
  • Keno
  • Xpress Sports

The launch of the new games has exceeded all expectations, and it has the sales numbers to prove it.

iLottery online interactive games start strong

Since the launch of iLottery online interactive games on May 22, the Lottery collected $130,736,825 in sales according to figures provided to PlayPennsylvania.

The Pennsylvania Lottery releases its financials yearly and its fiscal year runs July 1 to June 30. To help put $130.7 million number in perspective, let’s compare it to the $20.8 million in iLottery sales posted from May 22 through June 30.

That six-week figure translates to about $13.9 million a month or $83.4 million when multiplied out over six months. Instead, the online lottery brought in $130.7 million. It shows just how fast online lottery sales are growing. It also speaks to the popularity of its games.

The iLottery currently hosts 27 different interactive games. The online interactive games operate similarly to scratch-offs. Paper scratch-offs racked up over $2.8 billion in sales for the Lottery.

Scratch-offs account for 66.6 percent of Lottery sales. That piece of information bodes well for the future growth of the iLottery interactive game portfolio.

Keno also off to a strong start

Keno debuted on May 1, a few weeks ahead of the iLottery games. In its first two months of sales, Keno brought in $7.6 million in sales. Since its launch, Keno racked up $23,863,194 in sales.

It appears sales slowed down a bit after the launch of the iLottery games. It is hard to say if there is a correlation, but Keno does not appear to be growing as fast as online lottery games.

Even so, $23.8 million is an impressive sum.

Keno is fast-paced with drawings held every four minutes. Players can play at any Lottery retailer and watch the results live.

Drew Svitko, the Pennsylvania Lottery executive director, talked about the launch of the new products as it released its latest financial report.

“These encouraging results show that our ongoing modernization efforts are succeeding. With the Lottery facing increased competition from sports wagering, mini-casinos and other new forms of gambling, we must continue to work hard to grow revenues to benefit older Pennsylvanians.”

Xpress Sports launches to controversy

Xpress Sports is the third Lottery product made possible because of the gaming expansion law. It launched in mid-August amid some controversy, however.

At the time, casinos were busy preparing for legalized sports betting in the Keystone State and saw Xpress Sports as competition. Their response was to file a lawsuit.

But that didn’t slow down sales of the realistic, animated sports matchups with randomly generated outcomes. Since its launch, the virtual sports games made $870,989 in sales.

Not quite the sales generator of the iLottery games or Keno, but producing just shy of $1 million in its first few months is indeed a solid result. It will be interesting to see how PA sports betting, now that it has launched, affects Xpress Sports sales going forward.

Pennsylvania Lottery jumps to the head of the class

For states considering taking their lottery online, they only have to look to PA to see it done right. On the whole, the Pennsylvania Lottery had record sales of more than $4.2 billion in the fiscal year ending June 30, 2018. It is not a stretch of the imagination to think it will shatter that figure when this year is in the books – especially with how its three new products are performing.

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Kim Yuhl

Kim Yuhl is a freelance writer and blogger who writes about poker culture and the online gambling industry. A part-time member of the poker media since 2013, Kim recently sold her marketing business to write full-time while traveling around the world. You can learn more about her work and travels at

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