Branson ahead as Lottery decision goes to a roll-over

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The Independent Online

Richard Branson looks set to take over the National Lottery - even though neither he nor his rival Camelot were officially appointed by the Lottery Commission today.

Richard Branson looks set to take over the National Lottery - even though neither he nor his rival Camelot were officially appointed by the Lottery Commission today.

In a shock announcement this lunchtime the commission said that Camelot and Richard Branson's People's Lottery consortium had both failed to fulfill all the criteria necessary to run the Lottery from October.

But while Camelot are definitely out of the running for the new contract, the People's Lottery appears only to have failed on technicalities, which will be thrashed out over the next month.

Commission chairman Dame Helena Shovelton said Camelot had been ruled out because of unresolved problems with software supplied by US firm Gtec.

However concerns over player's refunds in the People's Lottery bid were not a barrier to holding further negotiations with the Virgin tycoon's consortium.

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