888 has agreed a deal with Facebook to provide real-money gambling products over the social network, it confirmed this morning.
UK users of its existing social bingo apps will soon be offered the opportunity to play games for cash prizes, with a casino, including slots, to follow at a later date. 888′s Bingo Island, which offers a blend of bingo and slots, currently boasts 630,000 players on Facebook, with social casino app Slots Blast numbering 180,000 users.
888 is poised to become the second operator to offer real-money gambling games via Facebook following Jackpotjoy owner Gamesys’ launch of Bingo & Slots Friendzy in the UK market in August. Today’s announcement also places 888 firmly in the box seat to become the first to offer real-money blackjack and roulette on Facebook.
COO of 888 Itai Frieberger said the company’s freemium games on Facebook had “found a significant audience” and that the company was “very excited” by the opportunity to integrate the real-money component into its existing offering on Facebook.
Facebook’s head of games partnerships for Facebook in Europe, Julien Codorniou, said the platform was pleased to be working with 888, whose games had a reputation for both quality and safety.
Facebook in August confirmed reports circulating since early summer that it was in discussions with other gambling companies over expanding the range of real-money games available through the platform to include blackjack and roulette. The social network’s designs on the real-money space became clear in early 2011, when it held behind-closed-doors roundtable discussions with around 20 senior figures from the online gambling and social casino sectors.
Article written by Stephen Carter