N.J. Indies Fear Wawa's Lottery Machine Expansion
MANTUA TOWNSHIP, N.J. – Wawa Inc. plans to extend its partnership with the New Jersey Lottery by adding self-service ticket machines to all of its 210 stores within the state by the end of the first quarter. This has some independent convenience store operators concerned about their future revenue, according to an NJ.com report.
"If somebody's stopping by to just get lottery tickets, he or she might change their mind and decide to get something else," said Vasant Patel, owner of the Woodbury Variety and Deli. "If the customers are going [to Wawa] to stop for food or gas, now they're going to go in and buy lottery tickets."
Patel stated that his store generally makes $300 to $500 per day when there are impending lottery drawings. He added that if lottery ticket sales start to decline, he may "have to change [his] game plan" and offer deals such as a drawing for a free sub sandwich for customers who purchase a ticket from his store but didn't win.
Another retailer told the news outlet that he is concerned that his struggling business may not survive without lottery ticket sales.
Wawa's automated machines offer tickets for a range of lottery games, such as Pick 4 and the Mega Millions. It already has 212 machines installed in Pennsylvania and 67 in Virginia.