The Missouri Lottery is experiencing an increase in ticket sales this year compared to last year. Executive Director May Scheve said she hopes the momentum will continue.
“This year the Missouri Lottery sales are off to a good start so far. I think it has a lot to do with the price of gas and the great weather we are experiencing,” said Scheve. “Our transfers are up $4.6 million and that’s 7% higher than our benchmark goal. So we’re looking forward to a strong year.”
Scheve said the lottery is a viable part of Missouri’s economy.
“I think we’re number four as far as after agriculture and different entities like that about what we contribute to the economy of the state of Missouri,” said Scheve. “So, Missouri Lottery is important to our state’s existence.”
All the Missouri Lottery’s proceeds go to public education with more than $267 million given to schools last year. Scheve said an estimated $273.3 million is expected to go to elementary, secondary and higher education this year if sales continue to stay strong. The revenue for schools goes to fourteen different programs, including Missouri’s A+ Scholarship Program.
Scheve said the Lottery’s portfolio has contributed to higher revenue for schools.
“I think our revenue for education will go up this year because we’ve taken a really strong look at our portfolio for the games that we offer.”
She said sales have been strong for pop culture type scratcher cards, like the Walking Dead, Mardi Gras World and Escape to Margaritaville.
Scheve said more lottery scratcher tickets are sold in Missouri than computerized games like Powerball and Mega Millions.
“We do about $770 million in scratcher sales, as opposed to the rest being about 30%. So, we sell more than $1.1 billion in tickets every year,” said Scheve. “That’s more than the Cardinals, the Rams, the Royals, the Chiefs, the Blues and Imo’s Pizza sells in one year combined.”
Through quarterly studies conducted, Scheve said the Missouri Lottery office measures sales performance, sales demographics, among other things. Most ticket buyers are men between 35 and 65 years old, making $50,000 to $70,000 a year with some college education.