The Changing Face Of Bingo Portals

For those of you who haven’t read my author biography and don’t know my history, here is a brief recap. I started playing bingo online in 2004 at Think Bingo, a site that I stayed at for two years before being banned from their forum for speaking my mind (incidentally, they still let me play bingo there). At this point I wanted to find a new bingo home and went off to read reviews at a number of well-known review sites in order to find somewhere that suited my gaming requirements. On doing so I found that most of the content written appeared to be ‘marketing hype’. There appeared to be just one site speaking for the player (Playing Bingo of course) so I created another – BallsUp Bingo was born.

BallsUp Bingo was later sold and I needed somewhere new to air my opinions on all things bingo, this is how I arrived at Playing Bingo. In the eight years since I started BallsUp, portals have changed with the lines between operator and portal very blurred.

David (the owner of Playing Bingo) and I started our own brand last year, as our readers well know. Tidy Bingo was opened on 21st August 2013 and since launch we have been transparent in our involvement in the brand. However, the same cannot be said of many pay to play operators who blatantly advertise their sites as being the ‘Best’ on their portals. A number of the best-known portals keep their ownership of brands under wraps but a little research can tell you who owns what site.

On Tuesday news of a big acquisition was released, Gaming Realms (the company behind Bingo Godz and started by big names from Cashcade Patrick Southon, Simon Collins and Noel Rowse) bought Blueberra Holdings, the company who own Bingo Port. This will no doubt change the portal market even further.

Where will players turn for completely unbiased reviews of brands, honest opinions and real player perspectives when it seems all around us are losing their heads to the operator market? I can only speak from my perspective of course and I won’t be changing how I cover all things bingo and I’m sure David will feel the same way. Whilst a £10.5 million pay off is great for the Bingo Port owners, how is it going to affect how the site is run? Look out for top positioning of Bingo Godz, Iceland Bingo and other sites from Gaming Realms – not to mention the sites owned by Digital Blue (Blueberra Holdings is the holding company for Digital Blue).

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