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Mega Millions: Spontaneous office pool won $543 million jackpot

06 August 2018

A group of 11 colleagues hit the jackpot when their office lottery pool had the winning numbers for the $543 million prize in a recent Mega Millions drawing.

The jackpot is the largest in California history and third largest Mega Millions jackpot in the game's history.

The group didn't usually form an office pool but chose to buy a ticket for the July 24 drawing on a whim, according to a statement from the California Lottery. Everyone pitched in $2. Lottery officials confirmed last week it was the lone jackpot ticket in the $522 million draw.

Officials didn't say whether the group members chose the $543 million prize paid in 30 installments or opted for the cash payout of $320.5 million ($29.13 million each, before federal taxes).

Winners range in age from 21 to 60, the release says. He did not say where they worked, other than it's in the financial industry and somewhere in Santa Clara County.

At least one co-worker said she would invest the money and hopes to not be a "one time millionaire", according to the release.

The rest of the winners declined to be named and would not say the name of their company. "We have a good time and want to stay together".

Reyes was the lone member of the group the lottery identified.

The winning ticket was sold in San Jose, CA.

Reyes said he figured they had a better chance of winning if they bought the ticket from a small shop.

In addition to the 11 colleagues, the other victor in the deal was Kewal Sachdev, the co-owner of the store that sold the winning ticket, Ernie's Liquor in San Jose.

Mega Millions: Spontaneous office pool won $543 million jackpot