Internet Bingo Continues Phenomenal Growth
Internet bingo continues its phenomenal growth in the UK and Europe. Recent industry expansions into Sweden and Spain have been very successful and the internet bingo industry continues to grow. In the UK the rapid growth of internet bingo has been driven by the national smoking ban which sent thousands of land based players online and high taxation which has closed many bingo halls throughout the country. Although the modern version of the game was introduced in the United States bingo became immensely popular in the UK following World War Two. Almost every English hamlet had its High Street bingo hall and industry giants such as Mecca and Gala Bingo added a touch of glamour to the game.
Internet bingo has attracted a new demographic and now the typical internet bingo player is a female 20 to 40 years old. Rapid industry expansion has created a competitive atmosphere which has benefited players in many ways. Internet bingo websites are offering larger than ever jackpots and unprecedented player perks. Most bingo sites offer either a bingo sign up bonus or a deposit bonus and players can now easily double, or even triple, the size of their deposits. In Europe ewallet Paypal has re entered the gaming market and players can now use this highly reputable service for both deposits and payouts. In addition to traditional 75 ball bingo most European bingo websites offer 90 ball bingo which is popular in the UK, Australia and New Zealand.
The Internet bingo now has its own industry associations and holds annual meetings in London for industry representatives. Bullet Business, which hosts the annual bingo summit, reports that the internet bingo industry has “grown phenomenally.” In 2006 the first online bingo summit attracted 80 companies but just 12 months later had 180 companies attending. In 2009 the internet bingo summit attracted 350 participants and the numbers keep growing. According to Ravi Virpal, director of Bullet Business, online bingo has “grown in the national conscience” and says the annual bingo summit is “the pivotal point” for the industry.
The expansion of the internet bingo industry into Scandinavia has been well received among Swedish, Norwegian and Danish bingo players. Lars Bakken Elvsveen, an employee of Norsk Bingo AS said that Norwegians “have a great love for bingo.” In Sweden internet bingo has achieved instant popularity. Industry insider Dominic Mansour said that Sweden is a “key market” for internet bingo. He said the popularity is because of “the high internet penetration and propensity to play bingo” in Sweden. Industry experts expect continued growth and predict more expansion into European markets soon.
By Anthony Wayne
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