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A long tradition of winning with Hohe Brücke!

Since Emperor Franz Josef personally charged Consul Josef Stein with the management of the Austrian Class Lottery, thousands of people have been able to enjoy prizes worth millions.

The Austrian Class Lottery goes back as far as 1913

“I grant my sanction to the draft law on the repeal of the numerical lottery and the introduction of the class lottery adopted by both Houses of the Imperial Council and I give you the signed law.” (Emperor Franz Joseph)

History of Hohe Brücke and the Austrian Class Lottery


1913
Hohe Brücke
Founded by Consul Josef Stein (owner of Stein bank), second husband of Hermine von Mihalovits, née Countess Kolowrat-Krakowsky
Class Lottery
Approval by personal decree of Emperor Franz Josef on 3 January 1913

1913 – 1938
Hohe Brücke
Establishment of the company ‘Glücksstelle Stein’ as market leader in the class lottery using the advertising slogan “Über die Hohe Brücke führt der Weg zum Glücke” (“The way to happiness is across the high bridge”)
Class lottery
Execution in the Ministry of Finance by the ‘K & K Gefällsdirektion’, later ‘K & K Generaldirektion der Staatslotterien’, then ‘Dienststelle der Staatslotterien’ (until 1962)

1928
Hohe Brücke
Expansion of the branch network to Czechoslovakia (Prague and Karlovy Vary)
Class lottery
Change of name from ‘Deutsch-Österreichische Klassenlotterie’ to ‘Österreichische Klassenlotterie’

1938
Hohe Brücke
The company is taken over by Consul Stein’s stepson Zdenko von Mihalovits for political reasons
Class lottery
The name is changed to ‘Ostmärkische Klassenlotterie’ (40th lottery)

1939
Hohe Brücke
The name is changed to ‘Geschäftsstelle Zdenko Mihalovits’
Class lottery
Incorporation into the ‘Deutsche Reichslotterie’

1946
Hohe Brücke
Opening of the Bad Ischl branch in the western zone
Class lottery
New/old name: ‘Österreichische Klassenlotterie’, ‘Austrian Class Lottery’ (41st lottery)

1953
Class lottery
Introduction of draws every 14 days (previously once a month up to this point)

1962
Hohe Brücke
Honouring of the 1000th winner of a million at Hohe Brücke since 1913. The prize is paid out to a regular player.
Class lottery
Implementation in the Ministry of Finance by the ‘Österreichische Glücksspielmonopolverwaltung’, the Austrian authority for monitoring gambling

1968
Class lottery
Expansion of the schedule from 5 to 6 classes.

1975
Class lottery
Change to weekly draws

1980
Hohe Brücke
The business is bought by Hans Pressel (son-in-law of Zdenko von Mihalovits), a member of the Commercial Council

1981 – 1994
Class lottery
Gradual increase in the number of tickets from 70,000 to 200,000 and in the top prize from 8 to 50 million schillings

1982
Hohe Brücke
Closure of the Bad Ischl branch
Class lottery
First live final draw on TV

1983
Hohe Brücke
The offices are refurbished

1985
Hohe Brücke
Introduction of the lottery abroad in Germany and the Netherlands, later also in Japan and the USA

1991
Hohe Brücke
Hohe Brücke becomes the largest branch with a market share of 45%
Class lottery
Draws are changed to include prefixes and suffixes

1994
Hohe Brücke
Main sponsor of the biggest Austrian professional golf tournament, the ‘Hohe Brücke Open’, organised by the European PGA

1995
Hohe Brücke
The firm is sold to Dr Wilhelm Gorton and Walter Wolf

1997
Hohe Brücke
Expansion to Eastern and South-eastern Europe
Class lottery
‘Gold Lottery’ with an additional 100 kg of gold to be won

1998
Hohe Brücke
First own TV ads
Class lottery
Introduction of interactive TV adverts with a call centre

1999
Hohe Brücke
New soft and hardware are installed; start of online sales
Class lottery
Special ‘Millennium Game’ on the occasion of the turn of the millennium

2000
Hohe Brücke
New company name: ‘Geschäftsstelle der Klassenlotterie HOHE BRÜCKE Ges.m.b.H’
Class lottery
Start of the 150th ‘Anniversary Lottery’ with a new schedule (‘Win a million every day’)

2000
Class lottery
Comprehensive product relaunch: discontinuation of replacement tickets from the 155th class lottery, introduction of the Super Class

2002
Hohe Brücke
Takeover of Glücksstelle Moser with its branch office in Linz
Class lottery
From the 154th class lottery, the number of tickets is raised from 200,000 to 250,000.

2003
Hohe Brücke
90 years of HOHE BRÜCKE! The Österreichische Postsparkasse’s class lottery customers are taken on board
Class lottery
90 years of Class Lottery (13 November). The ‘Win2day’ page is launched

2004
Hohe Brücke
New service for our customers: the Hohe Brücke online account; re-design and modernisation of the business premises in Vienna; business premises in Vienna are sublet to GRUBER-REISEN
Class lottery
Double the winnings: during a special promotion, the prizes in the 5th class of the 159th class lottery are doubled by the organiser.

2005
Hohe Brücke
Michael Gröller MBA takes over Walter Wolf’s shares in the business. Takeover of Glücksstelle AZET with its branch office in Salzburg
Class lottery
First use of Management Board letters by ÖLG as advertising material

2006
Hohe Brücke
Takeover of the Michalek branch in Vienna

2007
Class lottery
Change of ownership in ÖLG (BAWAG’s shares are sold to Casino AG)

2008
Hohe Brücke
General services offered at the Salzburg branch and cooperation with the firm ‘MyHome Music’

2010
Hohe Brücke
Cooperation with ‘Mrs. Sporty’ (a Steffi Graf fitness centre) at the business premises in Vienna
Class lottery
The lottery schedule is changed — the number of prizes in the first class is increased

2011
Hohe Brücke
Steiermärkische Sparkasse’s class lottery customers are taken on — Hohe Brücke reaches a market share of around 50%
Class lottery
ÖLG celebrates its 25th anniversary

2012
Hohe Brücke
Hohe Brücke’s internet presence is relaunched: the website is modernised with customer-friendly navigation and a simpler order process
Class lottery
Launch of the Gold Class

2013
Hohe Brücke
Hohe Brücke’s 100th anniversary — Hohe Brücke’s internet presence is relaunched: the website is modernised with customer-friendly navigation and a simpler order process
Class lottery
100 years of class lottery

2014
Hohe Brücke
Founding of HOHE BRÜCKE Ges.m.b.H & Co. KG – o.z., Bratislava/Slovakia
Class lottery
The website ‘klassenlos.at’ is launched as an association website for the acquisition of new customers on the web.

2015
Hohe Brücke
New company name following restructuring: HOHE BRÜCKE GmbH
Class lottery
The Association of Branch Offices and ÖLG jointly implement a two-year ‘sales growth programme’

2016
Hohe Brücke
Closure of the branches in Linz and Salzburg
Class lottery
Director of the Board Friedrich Stickler, who was responsible for the Austrian Class Lottery since ÖLG’s inception, retires

2017
Hohe Brücke
Establishment of an IT department in Bratislava with a focus on online marketing
Class lottery
Change of ownership in the CASAG / ÖLG Group: Novomatic and a Czech investor group acquire majority stake