The ongoing financial crisis for land based bingo seems to be deepening at the moment. I’ve recently featured stories looking at Gala Bingo’s finances and their problems. but today it’s the turn of a smaller player, The Buckingham Bingo chain. The Telegraph carries a report about the chain’s current debt problems, concerned with Buckingham Bingo’s £88.7million pre-tax loss and the effect it will have on the parent company’s banking and loan covenants.
Only last year Alchemy Partners lost control of the business following their writing off of their £76.7million stake in the company. I mentioned that was in danger of happening back in March last year, but I didn’t realise that the warning they received at the time had actually led to Barclays taking over the major share of the company. Mind you, given the way banks like to gamble, maybe it’s not so surprising they moved into the bingo world! But I digress – according to the report the company is confident it has the resources to continue to operate, which is something.
Now that they have their online presence sorted out as well, I wonder if that will help them raise their falling revenues? They’ve thrown their lot in as a networked site on Virtue Fusion, so it’s unlikely they’ll have the levels of online success the likes of Gala and Mecca Bingo are enjoying, but still, in these pinched times every little helps. Let’s hope Buckingham Bingo is able to overcome these problems and keep going, as it would be a shame to see more closures.