Turkey plans to privatize the country’s national lottery (Milli Piyango) by the end of this year, said the deputy president of the Privatization Authority, Ahmet Aksu.
“We plan to finalize the process in the Milli Piyango privatization by the end of this year,” he said on Nov. 4, as quoted by agencies, adding that an additional time was granted to the second bidder of the tender until mid-December.
The top bidder of the tender was a Turkish consortium of two experienced gaming companies that emerged triumphant from a fierce competition to earn the 10-year operational rights of Turkey’s national lottery, after placing the highest bid of $2.755 billion in the privatization tender held July 15, 2014. The consortium, however, asked until April 15, 2015 to finalize the process because of a sharp loss in the Turkish Lira’s value.
The consortium later said an agreement for the lottery privatization could not be signed on April 15.
Turkish Finance Minister Mehmet Şimşek said on April 15 the country’s national lottery privatization tender process will probably continue with the second highest bidder, rather than give further time to the top bidder to sign a deal.
The second bidder announced that the Finance Ministry had notified that the process would be held with them in a written statement on April 22.
The second highest bidder, a joint venture of a Central Anatolian company owned by jeweler Ahlatcı and a Turkish company, ERG, also run by Turkish Lottery Holding, had given a bid of $2.75 billion in the tender.
Aksu also said the privatization target is 8.7 billion liras for this year and 10 billion liras for 2016, adding that a number of port privatizations are planned in 2016.