• France's news in English

Frenchman to give away most of lotto jackpot

Sophie Inge · 30 May 2014, 10:04

Published: 30 May 2014 10:04 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

The man, who wishes to remain anonymous, won a total of €72,149.579 in the jackpot, according to RTL radio.

He validated his ticket at an outlet in Haute-Garonne in south-western France in February this year but waited several days before cashing in his prize.

The jackpot is the seventh highest in France since the EuroMillions lottery began in February 2004 and the second largest prize in the department since a player won €101,855.641 in December 2012.

The winner now plans to give at least €50 million to around ten large national charities, making him the only lottery winner in French history to donate so much money to charity. 

Not much is known about the mysterious benefactor except that he is around 50 years old, is childless and that his decision was motivated by a “sense of solidarity”. He asks only that he sees evidence that the funds be put to good use.

Such large donations – especially anonymous ones – are rare in France.

In 2008, a man named Michel who won €50 million in town of Saint-Michel in the south-western Charente department donated €400,000 to the mayor for a cultural centre and paid off the debts of the local retirement home. In 2009 he paid for all the children’s meal cards at school cantines in his village, an initiative which he has repeated each year ever since.  

In April 2013 a female lottery winner of €26 million in the northern city of Boulogne-sur-mer region who was helped by her local branch of the Red Cross decided to make a donation to the charity.

Meanwhile, stories of unusual lottery winnings continue to make headlines in France.

Story continues below…

In May 2013 a French grandfather won a whopping €132 million in the EuroMillions lottery when he played for the first time

And more recently in December 2013, a lucky French punter won €15 million in the EuroMillions lottery on his birthday.

SEE ALSO: French and charity - why don't they go together?

Sophie Inge (sophie.inge@thelocal.com)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
France to scrap special prison wings for dangerous jihadists
Photo: AFP

The experiment has been ditched.

Refugee crisis
What rights do Calais migrants have in France?
Photo: AFP

Can the migrants work or claim social benefits or travel freely inside Europe?

Myth busting: Half of French adults are now overweight
A model at the Pulp Fiction fashion show in Paris that represents society's diverse spectrum . Photo: AFP

Hold on, aren't the French all meant to be finely toned specimens with not an ounce of fat on them?

France poised to send bulldozers into Calais Jungle
Photo: AFP

As hundreds of migrants leave, the bulldozers are set to tear down the sprawling Calais shanty town on Tuesday.

UK to spend €40 million on securing Calais border
Photo: AFP

Britain spending big on security in Calais.

Millionaire Riviera hotel boss kidnapped in broad daylight
The city of Nice where the millionaire was bundled into a car infront of shocked onlookers. Photo: AFP

The millionaire head of a luxury hotel in the French Riviera resort of Cannes was kidnapped in Nice in front of shocked onlookers in the middle of the day on Monday.

Where exactly in France are Calais migrants being sent?
Photo: AFP

Here's where the 8,000 migrants in Calais are heading.

The annoying questions only a half French, half British person can answer
Photo: Beery/Flickr/AFP

Being half French, half British is means you get asked a lot of questions (and some of them can be a little annoying.)

Migrants bussed out of Calais Jungle to all corners of France
All photos: AFP

Hundreds of migrants are being bussed across France on Monday ahead of the demolition of the Jungle camp.

The must-see French films of the millennium - Part One
A Prophet. Photo: YouTube Screengrab

Looking for something to watch?

The annoying questions only a half French, half Brit can answer
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Forget Brangelina's chateau - here are nine others you've got to see
The must-see French films of the millennium - Part One
How life for expats in France has changed over the years
Why Toulouse is THE place to be in France right now
Video: New homage to Paris shows the 'real side' of city
The 'most dangerous' animals you can find in France
Swap London fogs for Paris frogs: France woos the Brits
Anger after presenter kisses woman's breasts on live TV
Is France finally set for a cold winter this year?
IN PICS: The story of the 'ghost Metro stations' of Paris
How to make France's 'most-loved' dish: Magret de Canard
Welcome to the flipside: 'I'm not living the dream in France'
Do the French really still eat frogs' legs?
French 'delicacies' foreigners really find hard to stomach
French are the 'world's most pessimistic' about the future
Why the French should not be gloomy about the future
This is the most useful French lesson you will ever have. How to get angry
Why is there a giant clitoris in a field in southern France?
French pastry wars: Pain au chocolat versus chocolatine
Countdown: The ten dishes the French love the most
Expats or immigrants in France: Is there a difference?
How the French reinvented dozens of English words
jobs available