Lotto NZ to Spend NZ$25m to Kickstart an Online Transition Push

The New Zealand national lottery will invest NZ$25 million into upgrading its website and app and provide consumers with a better remote gambling experience.

NZ Sets out to Improve Online Lottery Website Operations

The New Zealand’s national lottery has decided to extend its presence online, with a new MyLotto website and a dedicated mobile app, allowing residents to place wagers remotely. The estimated cost of the project due to be completed in 2021 will be around NZ$25 million or roughly US$16.3 million.

According to Chris Lyman, chief executive at Lotto NZ, the upgrade was necessary in order to provide consumers with the quality they expect. Lyman described the current online solutions as dated and inadequate for the needs of New Zealand players.

There has been a tremendous growth in the number of online players, too, with some 33% new players joining online since New Zealand introduced a lockdown back in March. According to Lyman, estimated 200,000 people have joined the online gaming segment since March, making for a rather challenging operation of the online servers of the lottery.

In the Auckland region alone, 32,000 people registered last week, Lyman explained. Comparing numbers between the retail and online business, the brick-and-mortar sector was leading with 75% of all ticket sales registered in person prior to lockdown.

Yet, as of August 16, the online sales of tickets have risen to 40% online and 60% purchased in person. As traffic spiked over the past few months, the lottery had to deliver sub-par results, leading to timeouts, slow service, and more.

Lyman acknowledge the problems the lottery faced due to insufficient resources, but assured that it would be solved in due time. Lyman argued that because of the surge in traffic, the lottery struggled to process everything on time.

Now, though, New Zealand will see the new project arrive in 2021 and offer a more robust website and mobile app that can handle much bigger traffic spikes. Lyman assured that the investment will also overhaul terminals in betting shops other than improving the MyLotto website.

Adapting for the Future as COVID-19 Fears Lurk

New Zealand has been one of the first countries to tackle the COVID-19 and minimize the registration of new cases. Yet, the outbreak is once again back prompting TAB NZ to close all of its Auckland properties until at least August 26.

The outbreak coincides with the country’s decision to upgrade its lottery to provide a better online betting experience, which is yet another precaution against the virus. To respond to the physical threat, set at Alert Level 3 by the government, TAB NZ will increase the sanitization rate on its premises to guarantee both the safety of staff members and consumers who visit properties in person.

Social distancing protocols have been reinstated to offer better protection and a smaller chance of infection.  

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