ATLANTA – The Georgia Lottery generated a record $731.3 million in profit during the first half of the last fiscal year, Gov. Brian Kemp announced Thursday.

July through December of last year marked the most profitable first half of a fiscal year for the lottery since its inception in 1993.

That strong showing followed a record fiscal 2020 that allowed the Georgia Lottery Corp. to contribute more than $1.23 billion to Georgia’s HOPE Scholarships pre-kindergarten programs.

“This record success is great news for students in communities throughout Georgia,” Kemp said. “Georgia Lottery’s continued success ensures that Georgia’s students and families remain the ultimate winners.”

Lottery President and CEO Gretchen Corbin said a solid first half of fiscal 2021 provides momentum for the remainder of the fiscal year, which ends June 30.

“Since its first year, the lottery has returned more than $23 billion to the state for education. More than 1.9 million students have received HOPE, and more than 1.6 million 4-year-olds have attended the statewide, voluntary pre-kindergarten program.