Mega Millions winners identified as California office pool

Posted at 11:20 AM, Aug 04, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-04 13:20:45-04

A group of 11 co-workers won last week’s massive Mega Millions jackpot, lottery officials in California announced Friday. At the time of the drawing, the prize was listed as $522 million but was later revised upwards to $543 million.

The group didn’t usually form an office pool but decided to buy a ticket for the July 24 drawing on a whim, according to a statement from the California Lottery. Everyone, including the group’s supervisor, pitched in $2 each, according to the statement.

The lottery didn’t say how the winners would collect the jackpot. They could spread the prize out in payments over 30 years or take the lump-sum option of $320.5 million before taxes.

The winners ranged in age from 21 to 60 and said they planned to keep working. The lottery didn’t say where they worked other than that it’s in the financial industry.

"We love that company," winner Roland Reyes said in the statement. "We love what we’ve built there. We have a good time and want to stay together."

Reyes was the lone member of the group the lottery identified. The ticket was purchased at a liquor store in San Jose, which is about 50 miles south of San Francisco. Reyes said they deliberately sought out "a mom & pop shop" to buy the ticket, thinking it might give them better chance. 

The owner of the liquor store received a million dollars for selling the winning ticket. The winning numbers were 1, 2, 4, 19 and 29 with a Mega number of 20.

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