India gambles on Online Lotteries
By darren
Corporate India is betting on improving its fortune overnight. Big groups such as Essar, Forbes, Modi, Ispat, and Videocon are venturing into the online lottery business.

Almost all of them have concluded deals with state governments, obtained licences and are set to launch their products nationally in the next two months. A few have even got started on regional operations and are working aggressively towards establishing retail networks.

Subhash Chandra, Essel Group chairman: “The online lottery business is a potentially huge market and a low-risk, high-return business. Subhash Chandra, Essel Group chairman.”

The Essel Group certainly seem to have discovered that. The group recently found that the new business is delivering anywhere between 10% and 25% of the group’s turnover in the first year of operations itself.

The I-gaming business has virtually no expenses apart from the initial technology investment. Small wonder then, that break-even is around 10-13 months. And it’s a high volumes business. Only 15% of the population has taken part in a lottery and hence, there’s more than enough room for expansion.

There are three factors that play a vital role in this industry: technology, distribution and branding. With all the players possessing technology and distribution, success in the long run will come from proper branding and innovation. There is one glitch though - the association of online lottery schemes with gambling. Tamil Nadu, for instance, recently banned all lotteries.

Regardless India has finally embraced the online gambling industry, and looks set to become a world contender.

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