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#1
05-09-2003, 10:39 AM
 handy BANNED Join Date: Mar 1999 Location: Pacific Grove, Calif Posts: 17,493
Pepsi Contest: Win a Billion Dollars

Yep, a real contest.

Check the payment schedule:

"The Policy shall provide for payment of the One Billion Dollar Prize over 40 years pursuant to the following payment schedule: \$5 million per year for each of years 1 through 20; \$10 million per year for each of years 21 through 39 and a lump sum payment of \$710 million in year 40 (the "40-Year Payment Schedule"). "

http://billionsweeps.yahoo.com/billi...tic/rules.html

What are the odds?
#2
05-09-2003, 11:51 AM
 CRorex Guest Join Date: Oct 2001 Location: Right past the Lowes Posts: 1,938
Try non existant.

I mean first off you've got a 1 in a million chance of being selected for the game show...

then you've got a 1 in a million chance of randomly selecting the billion dollar 6 digit number.

1000000X1000000 = 1,000,000,000,000

Wouldn't that be a 1 in a TRILLION occurance?
#3
05-09-2003, 11:51 AM
 Enki Guest Join Date: Oct 2002 Location: Betwixt and between Posts: 35
Of living long enough to collect it that final \$710m payment? Depends on how old the winner is, among various and soundry other variables.

Of actually winning the prize? About zero for me, as I don't drink flat Coke.
#4
05-09-2003, 12:41 PM
 Sunspace Charter Member Join Date: Jun 1999 Location: Near the GT eeehhhh... Posts: 27,493
You have to be a 'legal United States resident'.

Bummer.
__________________
Rigardu, kaj vi ekvidos.
Look, and you will begin to see.
#5
05-09-2003, 12:45 PM
 Bill H. Guest Join Date: Jun 2000 Location: Silicon Valley Posts: 4,190
CRorex wrote
Quote:
 I mean first off you've got a 1 in a million chance of being selected for the game show...
No, but I don't know what the right odds are. Could be more or less then that. Basically, lots of people enter, and 1,000 are randomly selected to participate. (odds aren't exactly 1,000 / # of entrants; each entrant can enter multiple times up to 300, I believe)

Poor Berkshire Hathaway if someone actually wins. The odds of the thing actually paying off to anyone is 1/1,000 (assuming they get the full 1,000 entrants). 1/1,000 is pretty low, but it's far from impossible. I'm guessing Enki hit it on the head. They're counting on you dying before you get the bulk of it.
#6
05-09-2003, 01:00 PM
 Bill H. Guest Join Date: Jun 2000 Location: Silicon Valley Posts: 4,190
By the way, as the NPV of the Billion Dollars is really only \$250m, (and that's not even including the idea that you could die and not collect the bulk of it), and since the odds are 1/1,000 that they'll give it away, their "average" payout will be \$250,000 on that billion dollars. So the million dollar prize is actually a substantially larger piece of the prize package.

I wonder what WB is paying to cover the event. Also, as it's in Orlando I wouldn't be surprised if this thing is held at Disney World, and if so no doubt Disney is paying them as well. I wonder if Pepsi could even make money on this give-away.
#7
05-09-2003, 01:06 PM
 Munch Guest Join Date: Mar 2000 Location: Parts Unknown Posts: 22,042
Bill H., the odds of winning a million dollars is 1/1000 once you've made the show. The odds of winning the billion dollars is 1/1,000,000. Multiple each of those numbers by the number of total entries, and you've got something close to 0.

I think I'll go hit on Natalie Portman. My chances look really good to me right now.
#8
05-09-2003, 02:18 PM
 CRorex Guest Join Date: Oct 2001 Location: Right past the Lowes Posts: 1,938
Quote:
 Originally posted by Bill H. CRorex wrote No, but I don't know what the right odds are. Could be more or less then that. Basically, lots of people enter, and 1,000 are randomly selected to participate. (odds aren't exactly 1,000 / # of entrants; each entrant can enter multiple times up to 300, I believe) Poor Berkshire Hathaway if someone actually wins. The odds of the thing actually paying off to anyone is 1/1,000 (assuming they get the full 1,000 entrants). 1/1,000 is pretty low, but it's far from impossible. I'm guessing Enki hit it on the head. They're counting on you dying before you get the bulk of it.

The odds of SOMEONE winning something from the last 1,000 contestants is 100%.... someone will get 1 million dollars.

There are 1,000,000 combinations of a 6 digit number (0-9 = 10 6 columns so 10^6).

There will be 1,000 distinct numbers. Or .1% of the total combinations.

The collective odds of SOMEONE picking the 1 billion dollar number -- is 1:1000

Assuming that everyone in the country enters the contest: lets say since it's easier to work with300 million people (which is allowable under the rules) that you will be one of the 1000 people selected is 1:300000. Assuming that everyone has the same number of entries... Probably you'll have only maybe 100 million people responding and if 80% of them enter 300 entries 15% enter 200 times 4% enter 100 times and 1% enter 10 times you've got 27 billion 410 million entries... and if you enter once you've got a 1000 in 27,410,000,000 chance of being selected... or a 1:27 million chance

After you get to the game show, you've got a 1:1000 chance of winning 1 million dollars.

Or a 1:27 BILLION chance of winning with the second example. Or 1:3 million chance using the first example.

The odds of winning 1 billion dollars would be 1000 times greater.

Or 1:27 TRILLION and 1:3 BILLION

We haven't even looked at the odds of GETTING a game piece yet, those need to be factored in which makes things ever chancier.

You're better off hoping to win 15\$.

As for the payment schedual.

It LOOKS as if they are using the same interest scheme the state lottos use.

I mean think of how much money they'll make from the sale of pepsi products... They'll simply use the interest from what they sold to pay people off
#9
05-09-2003, 03:12 PM
 Happy Lendervedder Guest Join Date: Dec 2001 Location: Michigan Posts: 13,707
The marketing guru behind this is a friggin genius. I mean, you tell people you're giving away \$1 billion, but make it so difficult that you know you'll never have to pay up.

Oh, Pepsi will make money on this contest. Why else would they do it? They're a corporation, not philanthropists.

Happy
#10
05-09-2003, 04:19 PM
 Bill H. Guest Join Date: Jun 2000 Location: Silicon Valley Posts: 4,190
Munch wrote
Quote:
 Bill H., the odds of winning a million dollars is 1/1000 once you've made the show. The odds of winning the billion dollars is 1/1,000,000. Multiple each of those numbers by the number of total entries, and you've got something close to 0.
I'm not sure what we're in disagreement about. Perhaps it was my reference to the odds being 1/1,000 that they'll give away the (so-called) billion. I was referring to the odds of them giving it away to anybody, not the odds of them giving it away to a given entrant. Which is in fact 1/1,000.

By the way, I'm sure you meant divide by the number of entrants.
#11
05-09-2003, 04:38 PM
 Bill H. Guest Join Date: Jun 2000 Location: Silicon Valley Posts: 4,190
CRorex wrote
Quote:
 The collective odds of SOMEONE picking the 1 billion dollar number -- is 1:1000
That's what I said as well.
Quote:
 Assuming that everyone in the country enters the contest
False assumption
Quote:
 Assuming that everyone has the same number of entries
False assumption
Quote:
 ... Probably you'll have only maybe 100 million people responding and if 80% of them enter 300 entries 15% enter 200 times 4% enter 100 times and 1% enter 10 times
This is an interesting exercise, but how on earth did you come up with that? You literally could be off by a factor of 100.
Quote:
 if you enter once you've got a [...] 1:27 million chance of being selected.
Too many random assumptions for this to be valid. Also, this number smells wrong, as if you enter 300 times (as you propsed 80% of the rest of the people would), you'd have about a 1:100,000 chance of being selected which sounds way too easy.

Quote:
 We haven't even looked at the odds of GETTING a game piece yet, those need to be factored in which makes things ever chancier.
A game piece isn't required.
Quote:
 It LOOKS as if they are using the same interest scheme the state lottos use.
Very very different. A typical lotto payout is distributed evenly over 20 years. Which (at 4.5%) is equivalent to 65% of the money up front. I.e. if they say you win a billion dollars at Lotto, typically you're really getting \$650m. The pepsi thing is spread over 40 years and severely backloaded in a couple ways, bringing the equivalent net present value (again at 4.5%) to just under 24%, or \$240m. And that's not even to mention that the odds are certainly much higher then zero that a given contestant will die before the 40 years is up, losing a very large chunk of the money. In fact, if you die in the 39th year, you'll only have received the NPV of under 12% or \$120m.

Nothing to sneeze at mind you. But \$120m is a very different number from the \$650m you'd get from winning lotto.
#12
05-09-2003, 05:16 PM
 Little Nemo Charter Member Join Date: Dec 1999 Location: Western New York Posts: 76,190
Quote:
 Poor Berkshire Hathaway if someone actually wins. The odds of the thing actually paying off to anyone is 1/1,000 (assuming they get the full 1,000 entrants). 1/1,000 is pretty low, but it's far from impossible. I'm guessing Enki hit it on the head. They're counting on you dying before you get the bulk of it.
Quote:
 And that's not even to mention that the odds are certainly much higher then zero that a given contestant will die before the 40 years is up, losing a very large chunk of the money. In fact, if you die in the 39th year, you'll only have received the NPV of under 12% or \$120m.
The contestant may lose by dying early, but it's not going to do Berkshire Hathaway any good. They're obligated to make the full payment, either to the original winner or "their heirs, executors and assigns".
#13
05-09-2003, 06:34 PM
 Bill H. Guest Join Date: Jun 2000 Location: Silicon Valley Posts: 4,190
The rule set doesn't say one way or another. Perhaps by not saying they're obligated to pay it out. Perhaps the actual contract says differently. I dunno.
#14
05-09-2003, 06:56 PM
 MonkeyMensch Charter Member Join Date: Jul 2001 Location: Encinitas Posts: 2,561
Didn't youse guys read the rules? You can opt for a one-time \$250,000,000 payoff. So now I'm pretty much assured of winning, I think.

I have to go order some catalogs now...

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