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MANCHESTER, UK – One of the north’s largest independent bingo operators is considering its future as reports suggest that Buckingham Bingo, which runs bingo halls across Lancashire and Yorkshire and other parts of northern England could be up for sale in the near future.

In 2008, the owners of Buckingham Bingo, Alchemy Partners effectively sold its stake in the company to Barclays Bank in return for a waiver on its debt. Now, according to the Manchester Evening News, Buckingham Bingo have sought advice from corporate finance specialists KPMG to explore all options for the company’s future, which does include the sale of the company.

Alchemy Partners purchased the company for £90 million in 2006 and the value of Buckingham Bingo is thought to have plummeted since then so any potential buyers would only have to pay a fraction of the price.

Buckingham Bingo attracts more than 1.7 million players per year to its bingo halls and online site, but it has suffered, like many bingo companies, during the recession, after the smoking ban and the introduction to gross profit tax to replace bingo duty. All of these factors reduced Buckingham Bingo’s revenue enough to put it at risk of closure.

KPMG said of Buckingham Bingo’s future, “There can be no certainty in relation to the continued support of the bank and therefore the directors have concluded that a material uncertainty exists that may cast significant doubt upon the group and parent company’s ability to continue as a going concern.”

If Buckingham Bingo were to be taken over by a new buyer there would be risk to the jobs of 350 employees at 11 different sites across northern England.