1. How did you come up with the idea?
I came up with the idea while in a class called "Developing Entrepreneurial Skills" in my business course. We were tasked with creating a business idea and simulating its start-up and once the course was done I didn't want to stop thinking about it, working on it etc. From then until now, in the space of around 2 years, locallotteries.co.uk has formed and is ready to finally commence its service.
2. Does it make any profit?
No. And it never will. Local Lotteries aims to enhance communities and the lives of the people within them whilst competing and surviving with other lotteries and becoming an everyday part of every community. It never crossed my mind to make any profit from this as I saw it more as a learning experience, a great thing for the island and a CV builder. I have another project I am working on which I plan to turn into a profitable career (www.getyourhaircut.co.uk) and between these two I will fill up my time doing things I enjoy and am proud of doing.
Now bearing in mind I am not making a penny from this. Please read this article on the owner of the Health Lottery:
3. Who runs this?
My name is Robbie Macleod, I am 21 years old and from the Isle of Lewis where the first Local Lotteries will take place. I run Local Lotteries on my own as a non-profit social enterprise and I think this will always be the case. As mentioned above I set up Local Lotteries with the intentions of doing something good that I can be proud of. However, now I see this more as a career, with the differentiation from other much larger lotteries, I believe Local Lotteries has a great chance at becoming the number one lottery in the UK one day as it is so involving and trustworthy.
4. How does it work?
Local Lotteries sets up a lottery in a specific area for example, Isle of Lewis. In the shop section of the site a ticket becomes available where locals can buy tickets. Draws are fortnightly so the money raised from that is split:
58/40/2 (jackpot/local community fund/costs).
(The 2% costs is the card payment fees in order to ensure player's money is secure)
The community funds page has a local page added where locals can vote in a poll for who wins the funding over the 2 month funding period. People may add their own ideas to the poll.
Draws are executed on the Saturday night at the end of every fortnight at 10 o'clock. Results will immediately be added to the results page of the site. Then the next fortnights tickets will be available from the following Monday at 8 o'clock in the morning.
Every ticket bought will go into a list where it will highlight any winners. Winners will be contacted by email and they may also contact us via the contact us page.
5. How do the odds work
Odds can be different for each area based on users to provide the most fair possible lottery.
The Isle of Lewis Lottery has a great chance of one day having over £10,000 in revenue a fortnight due to other competitors weekly sales in the supermarkets alone that estimate is more than justified. If Local Lotteries can compete effectively then the odds could change to suit that.
However, to start with the odds will be 1 in 4,845 chance in winning. This may be increased or decreased if there are not enough winners (and the pubic want this). Also the license from the Local Authority is strict on rollovers so this may also factor into some odds.
6. How are you different from the other lotteries?
Local Lotteries is a non-profit which aims to keep its costs as low as possible in order to achieve as much differentiation from its competitors as possible.
Local Lotteries split of funds is:
58% to prizes, 40% to the local community fund and 2% to costs.
The National Lottery's split is:
50% to prizes, 28% to "good causes", and 22% costs
(12% to the government as duty, 5% to retailers as commission and 5% to Camelot - the operator for the Lottery (4.5% to costs and 0.5% to profit)).
As you can see Local Lotteries has taken advantage of The National Lottery's financial mistakes and allows Local Lotteries to ensure we are doing exactly what our goal is - enhancing communities and the lives of the people within them.
NO PROFITS, NEARLY-NO COSTS, MUCH BETTER USE OF FUNDS.
Local Lotteries has costs of 3p per £1.50 ticket. This is a card payment fee in order to make transactions secure and keep everyone's money safe. All other costs are personally funded - domain name, hosting fees, time.
We work like a democracy with our polls where everyone, both customers and non-customers, may vote on where the 40% of ticket sales goes. The local community fund is a project that Local Lotteries runs in order to fund projects, places, people etc.
The other 58% of ticket sales goes to local lottery jackpots which occur every two weeks. By having independent society lotteries in each local area, with specific odds, we provide people and communities with much more regular wins and much greater odds. We also have future plans to provide runner up prizes. The reason we provide one "game" in each area is the same reason our draws only occur fortnightly, research into the negative aspects of lotteries identified frequent draws and instant win games as promoting negative gambling habits in some people. We are trying to enhance communities and the lives of the people within them and expelling these negative aspects is imperative to our mission.
Local Lotteries is ran by 1 person who does not earn any money from it.
Local Lotteries will grow slowly at a pace it can handle, that way learning from its mistakes and keeping customers and their communities its 1 and only priority.
7. How are costs kept so low?
The only cost that Local Lotteries have to cover is the small charge it incurs on accepting payments as it is unavoidable to do this online, securely, without having to pay a small fee. It is around 2% of each ticket with direct debit charges being around 1%. Hopefully reading this will give an incentive to save 1% and set up a direct debit?
This was the only cost that Local Lotteries could not escape but it is such a small one that it doesn't worry me at all.
Every other cost will be covered by me; marketing, website domain, website hosting, website security, website upkeep, time in running Local Lotteries.
8. What is the local community fund?
The local community fund is set up at the same time as a new Local Lotteries where 40% of revenue from ticket sales grows over the course of 2 months (4 draws). People can vote in their local community fund page for what they would like to see the money go towards in a poll. They may also add their own ideas to the poll. Any people, projects, organisations, places in the local area are eligible for funding so long as they may acquire the votes and can be considered a charitable case.
A charitable case is required so people cannot complain when their "I want to go on holiday" addition to the poll gets declined.
This is also a fantastic opportunity for charitable organisations that people have thought of to start up as long as they may get the votes they can use the funding to finally start up that community project they dreamed of but could never start for financial reasons.
9. How are draws executed?
An online random number generator. Simple, cheap, effective.
10. Why not use an external lottery manager?
An online lottery manager takes care of everything from advertising to creation + running the website to finances. Once the lottery starts you can pretty much sit back and watch. These external lottery managers take a large amount of money for their service and I saw this as an ineffective use of people's money so that's when I started learning how to create a website. Nearly exactly a year later and here we are!