Brazil’s auctioning of its scratchcard lottery firm, Lotex, has fallen flat as not a single bid came forward to take it.
Lotex is instant lottery company which operates under a 15 year concession issued by the state, and is currently run by the Caixa Economica Federal bank.
When flagged for a sale by the Brazilian government last year, many had seen this as a rubicon for Brazil, which traditionally holds a firm grip on its gaming operations, and that could be the beginnings of a more open market.
Brazil’s Ministry of Finance had hoped to raise US$144m through the auction, cash which had already been earmarked for the National Public Security Fund.
The concessionaire would have been required to give a 65 percent payout to players, while 17 percent of revenues would be kept by the state.
Several big global players had expressed an interest in buying Lotex through auction, including Scientific Games, Intralot and IGT.
However by the 14 June deadline not a single bid had been entered, the deadline was pushed back again, but two weeks later and still no bids.
Potential bidders were reportedly perturbed by the fact that Caixa had not been allowed to make a bid itself – leaving the possibility open that Caixa might be, or have already been awarded its own concession to offer similar products in future.
Amendments were also added that left certain conditions open to a vote in September, meaning concessionaires could find themselves renegotiating again, long after a price had been settled and paid.