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Gigantic Powerball Prize On Offer This Weekend

Media Release 25 September 2008

Gigantic Powerball Prize On Offer This Weekend

Powerball First Division could potentially be the biggest-ever prize won by a New Zealander if won by a single ticket this weekend.

The First Division prize pool for Powerball is a guaranteed minimum of $18 million, but it could be higher, depending on sales this week.

This is the third time the Powerball jackpot has reached $18 million in its seven year history, says NZ Lotteries' Chief Executive, Todd McLeay.

"There is a real Powerball 'buzz' around the place, with Kiwis up and down the country discussing just what they would do if they won that $18 million jackpot," says Mr McLeay.

"If you stacked 18 million $1 coins on top of each other you would reach the same height most commercial airlines fly their passenger planes, 36,000 metres," says Mr McLeay

With $18 million, our Powerball winner could buy three Formula 1 cars, or 6,000 50-inch plasma televisions. Or, if they just put their winnings in the bank, they could collect more than $1 million in interest in the first year alone.

"In reality, most of our Lotto winners have more modest dreams of spending their windfall. According to a survey we conducted last year, our big winners tend to focus on financial freedom, buying houses and cars, overseas travel and of course, helping out their friends and family," Mr McLeay says.

Powerball Facts:

• The odds of winning Powerball are 1 in 38,383,800.

• The largest combined Lotto Powerball prize won to date was $19,054,243 won by a player who purchased their ticket at Pak'n'Save, New Plymouth in April 2008. That prize was made up of $18,816,031 from Powerball First Division and $238,212 from Lotto First Division.

• The largest-ever Powerball jackpot prize reached a massive $19.3 million in September 2003. As this was a 'Must Be Won' draw (before the maximum was raised to $30 million), and there were no First Division winners, the prize was split among the 14 Powerball Second Division winners, netting them $1,377,773 each.

• The number of tickets sold increases by around 500,000 tickets in a big jackpot week.

• The Powerball jackpot can go to $30 million before we call a must be won week - this maximum was increased in December 2003 from the previous maximum of $15 million.

ENDS

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