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Win-Win-Win: What Businesses Get From Powerball

By Ephrat Livni, Esq. on January 12, 2016 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Tomorrow's Powerball is inspiring millions of workers to dream of a day when they will be free. No more boss. No more job. And 1.5 billion dollars to play with! What could be better?

But what about the stores that sell these lottery tickets? What's in it for them? And is this a business you want to get in on? Is the lottery a money maker for retailers?

Winning Stores

With so much money at stake in tomorrow night's drawing, it is easy to see why people are playing like crazy. Retailers are reporting lines for tickets and states are reporting big profits. But there is more to motivate stores.

Lottery ticket retailers that sell winning tickets are also big winners. Although details vary from state to state, retailers get a percentage of every lottery ticket they sell. They also get a either a very small percentage of the total take or other cash bonuses if they sell a winning ticket. In New Jersey, for example, a retailer who sells a winning ticket gets a $30,000 bonus, according to Judith Drucker, a spokeswoman for the lottery commission.

It's not always easy to find a win-win situation. But this makes the lottery a win-win-win, for the actual winner, the winning retailer, and for states. New Jersey's Drucker expects about $20 million of the $50 million in tickets sold for the latest Powerball to go back into state coffers and will benefit education programs and fund scholarships and hospitals.

Advice From Billionaires

Billionaire Mark Cuban told The Dallas Morning News that his advice to the next Powerball winner is, first and foremost, get a tax attorney. On a more philosophical note, he advises, "If you weren't happy yesterday, you won't be happy tomorrow. It's money. It's not happiness. If you were happy yesterday, you are going to be a lot happier tomorrow. It's money. Life gets easier when you don't have to worry about the bills."

Talk to a Lawyer

If you are a business owner considering becoming a lottery ticket retailer but curious about what it means and what steps to take, consult with counsel. A commercial attorney can help you with business operations.

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