Next National Lottery operator admits Russian sanctions could hit business due to parent company’s links to Gazprom
Russian links: Allwyn Entertainment won the contract to run the National Lottery from 2024
The National Lottery’s next operator has admitted sanctions associated with the Russian invasion of Ukraine could affect the business.
Allwyn Entertainment won the contract to run the National Lottery from 2024 – but questions have been raised over its parent company’s links to Russian gas giant Gazprom.
The founder, Czech billionaire Karel Komarek, could be in line for a $750million (£572million) pay day when he lists Allwyn on the New York Stock Exchange.
The 53-year-old made much of his fortune from investments in oil and gas after the end of the Cold War but last month he started to cut links to Gazprom.
The billionaire also condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine last month.
Allwyn’s parent company KKCG runs a gas storage venture with Gazprom in the Czech Republic but is looking at ways to end the Russian firm’s involvement.
But an investor presentation for Allwyn warned: ‘The conflict between Russia and Ukraine, and related sanctions could negatively impact us.’
Allwyn won the contract for the National Lottery from Camelot earlier this year after the Gambling Commission awarded it a five-year licence.
But the deal could stall, as Camelot is taking the Gambling Commission to court for stripping it of the licence after 25 years.