Mississippi Lottery Rings Up $2.5M in Sales on Day 1
JACKSON, Miss. — The state of Mississippi has hit the jackpot: The Mississippi Lottery Corp. (MLC) announced first-day sales on Nov. 25 surpassed $2.5 million, translating into an anticipated return of $570,000 for the state coffers.
"We believe Mississippi has more than exceeded expectations," said MLC President Tom Shaheen. "We knew Mississippians were ready to play the lottery. We did not foresee the level of their excitement. Next, onto Powerball and MegaMillions."
The MLC activated the system at 5 a.m. on Nov. 25, enabling nearly 1,200 approved retailers to begin selling scratch-off tickets. MLC retailers are located in 80 of the 82 counties, and include convenience stores, c-stores that sell gas, grocery stores, tobacco stores, casinos and barber shops.
Approved retailers have successfully submitted applications, cleared background and credit checks, attended retailer training and received lottery equipment. From start to finish, the approval process on average takes approximately 30 days.
"Today would not have been possible without our retailers," Shaheen said. "Some are so excited they are hosting their own giveaways and promotions. In the coming weeks, the retailer base will continue to grow as we continue to process applications, as well as receive new applications."
Implementation of the scratch-off lottery system was made possible with support from the MLC board of directors, the Mississippi Department of Public Safety, the Mississippi Department of Revenue, the Mississippi Department of Finance and Administration, vendor partners and other state lotteries.
"I am extremely proud of MLC President Tom Shaheen and his staff at the lottery," said Mike McGrevey, chairman of the MLC board. "In a short period of time, he and his team have created something truly amazing. I have watched them meticulously work through hundreds of action items.
"They created the organization from the ground up in less than six months. This is not only a monumental day for the MLC, but it is also an incredible day for Mississippi. Legislative members determined net proceeds from the lottery will go toward infrastructure and education needs, which are both extremely important to Mississippians," he added.
According to the MLC, the Magnolia State will begin selling Powerball and MegaMillions tickets in January.