President’s perspective

Dear Members, Dear Partners, Dear Friends,

As I am writing to you, Europe and the whole world is facing the outbreak and pandemic spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). In just a few weeks, businesses and society have come to an almost full stand still in an attempt to halt its spread. The consequences and never before seen measures to deal with this crisis are being felt globally. The lottery sector has been hit hard and EL members are feeling the strain as retailers close their doors and draws postponed or cancelled.

The impact of this outbreak cannot be overlooked yet. With no doubt, it puts a shadow on the 2020 developments in the lottery sector. From EL’s side, earlier in March, the Executive Committee already took the decision to postpone all EL seminar and events until 1 July. Furthermore, it has been decided that the EL Industry Days in June will not take place this year due to the uncertain situation. EL, as well as our Partners and hosting Lottery Camelot believe this decision was taken in the best interest of the health and safety of all.

On a more positive note, EL is working hard to unite members and support their efforts during this difficult time. The Data & Research Working Group and the EL team are monitoring the COVID-19 effects on lottery members by collecting data on mitigation measures taken to counter-fight the negative effects on their businesses. These results will help us better understand the broader context of the pandemic and potentially learn some inspiring mitigation steps taken by others.

EL under the leadership of its Operational Risk and Assurance (ORA) Working Group has also already produced an overview of operational business continuity elements that could be – and many of them already are – implemented by individual lotteries to enhance their capability of an effective response. While the current situation is certainly a challenging one, it could also be embraced as an opportunity for lotteries to further enhance their digital transformation, as well as their operational and overall business resilience.

EL itself is taking steps in these digital opportunities that arise right now. With the postponed seminars programme, the EL staff are working under the guidance of the Secretary General on a first phase of an EL e-learning platform. This will bring the educational activities right into a smart working environment. Hopefully the platform can be launched in a few weeks from now.

The monitoring and advocating work of EL also goes on. At EU level, the European Parliament recently approved the first EU wide measures to help people and business deal with the impact of the corona outbreak. The Parliament fully supports the measures being taken by the EU to help Member States deal with the pandemic and mitigate its effects. I am pleased to see countries working together with a clear sense of community spirit.

Although the top priority for the European Commission is responding to COVID-19, key policy developments and proposals, relevant for the lottery sector continue to move forward, namely the Digital Services Act (DSA) and Artificial Intelligence. EL continues to monitor these topics and earlier this year, already sent a letter to Margrethe Vestager, Executive Vice-President of the European Commission and Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for Internal Market on the future of the DSA. EL considers this to be an extremely important initiative, as it will be a key piece in the creation of new and more effective rules for the digital era we live in, upgrading the EU’s liability and safety rules for digital platforms, services and products.

Finally, I would like to turn your attention to some Association highlights from the beginning of this year. In this first edition of the 2020 EL magazine, you will read about our successful Marketing Seminar in London and our Communications Seminar in Munich. Both events brought together inspiring speakers and were again opportunities for the exchange of best practices and knowledge sharing.

I would also like to give a special thanks and farewell to EL’s Deputy Secretary General Jutta Buyse who leaves the Association after 11 years. During this time Jutta led the public affairs work for EL and brought her expertise and insight on the workings of the EU to respond to important Commission consultations and proposals in a timely and professional manner. Jutta will be sorely missed, and I personally wish her much success in her future endeavours.

I leave you with a positive outlook during these unprecedented times. As we know, historically lotteries have always played an important role in responding to emergency situations where funding is needed. I am proud to say that many of our members are treating this crisis no differently – providing their valuable support and financial contributions for the benefit of society. Myself, the Executive Committee and the EL team are ready to offer support to all members during this difficult moment.

Take care and stay safe.

Yours Sincerely,
Hansjörg Höltkemeier
EL President

Other Articles

View all

INTRALOT | The challenge of privacy and security in a modern gaming world

THE INCREASING SIGNIFICANCE OF PERSONAL DATA PROTECTION In our heavily-loaded-information era, global players deal with a large amount of information in their daily lives; they produce, process and s......

Read more Synopsis: fr / es / de

Webinar 23 April – Lotteries In COVID-19 Lockdown

In a webinar on Thursday 23 April (14:00 GMT, 15:00 CET), conducted in association with EL, VIXIO GamblingCompliance brings together lottery industry experts and executives. Register here =>>......

Read more

EL/WLA Marketing Seminar: “It’s all about the Player”

The 2020 Annual EL/WLA Marketing Seminar, held in London, saw a vibrant mix of senior industry figures and speakers from leading-edge agencies and consultancies combine to create a dynamic event for the assembled international delegates....

Read more Synopsis: fr / es / de

Lotteries and COVID-19: From tactical to strategic continuity

As the COVID-19 outbreak continues to have a dramatic impact worldwide, EL has produced an overview of operational continuity elements that could be – and many of them already are – implemented by individual lotteries to enhance their capability of an effective response....

Read more Synopsis: fr / es / de

“Reflecting on 11 years at the European Lotteries’’ | An interview with former EL Deputy Secretary General Jutta Buyse

Since 2016 Jutta Buyse was the Deputy Secretary General of EL and represented the Association in the Brussels office since 2009. During this time, Jutta led the public affairs for EL and experienced historic moments for the Association at European level....

Read more Synopsis: fr / es / de

EL Communications Seminar: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly!

At a time when digital communication is rapidly evolving and social media is one of the biggest sources of new, it is increasingly important to distinguish fact from fiction. The objective of this year’s EL Seminar was to focus on ‘‘the good, bad and the ugly’’ sides of communications....

Read more Synopsis: fr / es / de

Introduction to the new General Manager of Loteria Romana

Since 10 January 2020 Sebastian – Iacob Moga is the new General Manager of the C.N.  "Loteria Română" S.A., being appointed to this position by the Board of Administrators....

Read more Synopsis: fr / es / de

EL Report on the Lottery Sector in Europe

Every year EL members provide an overview of how they work and demonstrate the importance of lotteries for the benefit of society....

Read more Synopsis: fr / es / de

EL supports ENGSO-led Erasmus+ Sport project launched to foster mental well-being in sport

EL has become a reliable and invaluable advocate for the role of sport in society and it has lent its backing as a ‘Supporting Partner’ to the SPIRIT project, co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme....

Read more Synopsis: fr / es / de

A partnership for society: EL and ENGSO commit to enhancing the role of grassroots sport in 2020–2021

EL and ENGSO, the European Sports NGO are further extending their partnership with a new two-year agreement (2020-21)....

Read more Synopsis: fr / es / de

Scientific Games | Data in Motion Reimagines Play

C-stores and supermarkets are modernizing to attract consumers who have come to expect more conveniences. The lottery category has the opportunity to create better experiences for players and efficiencies for retailers....

Read more Synopsis: fr / es / de

IGT | Lottomatica: Boosting Support for Women in the Workplace

Italian operator Lottomatica uses a range of programmes and tools to promote gender balance and offer personal and professional support for female employees....

Read more Synopsis: fr / es / de

EL Statement: Postponement of Seminars & Events until 1 July due to COVID-19

Due to the recent outbreak and rapid spread of the Coronavirus COVID-19, the EL Executive Committee has taken the decision to postpone all EL seminars and events until 1 July 2020. It is further decided that the EL Industry Days will not take place this year due to the uncertain situation....

Read more Synopsis: fr / es / de

100 days of the von der Leyen Commission

March 2020 marked 100 days since the current College of the European Commission took office. Commission President Ursula von der Leyen looked back at the achievements, but also ahead at the expected next steps in line with the agenda outlined in her Political Guidelines back in July last year. This agenda was in the meantime hit hard the last weeks by the rapid spread of COVID-19....

Read more Synopsis: fr / es / de