A syndicate of 24 claimed the multi-million dollar prize between them.
The union, whose members live from the bottom of the North Shore to the Northland border and are at different stages of their lives, said their winnings would be life-changing for everyone, despite sharing the $23.3million from 24 ways.
“We have different ages, so this win will help people buy their first home, as well as help them retire a little earlier.
“So many people are going to benefit from this and we are so grateful to have won,” the union organizer said.
According to the syndicate, which wishes to remain anonymous, members wager $2 each per draw, play lucky draws and only collect tickets when the jackpot exceeds $10 million.
But last Wednesday’s jackpot was only the fifth time this year the syndicate has purchased a Powerball ticket.
The syndicate organizer discovered they had won when they checked their tickets on the night of the draw.
“I checked the ticket on the Lotto NZ app and couldn’t believe it when the ‘grand prize’ appeared! I was so excited and overwhelmed and wanted everyone to know as soon as possible .
“So I started messaging everyone in the union – and a lot of them responded straight away, but there were a few who didn’t respond, so I thought they must have gone to bed early.
“But that was it…my phone rang all night,” they laughed.
“Everyone was thrilled and there was a lot of talk about how people were going to use their winnings – we barely slept between us!”
In the morning, the beeps started again when those who hadn’t answered the night before woke up to the life-changing news.
“There was a whole other flurry of excitement the next morning when the rest of the band saw my message,” they said.
Lucy Fullarton, communications manager at Lotto NZ, said she was delighted the prize could have a positive impact on the lives of so many people.
“We know that when Powerball prizes are won, the impact is wider than the person who purchased the ticket – with benefits extending to the winner’s family and community. So when we heard that $23.3 million had been won by 24 people, we were thrilled for them.
“After talking with the union, it is so clear that this money is going to make a difference, not only in their lives, but also in their whānau and their communities. It has been such a privilege to listen to their plans and help them to celebrate their victory.”