Leading global social media organisation Facebook looks set to try to capitalise on the strong market for bingo in the UK by launching a virtual version of the game for its UK membership.

The new bingo game – Bingo Friendzy – is provided in association with online gaming company Gamesys via a special app.

The game offers the opportunity for 18-plus UK Facebook members to win cash prizes in return for a monetary stake, and is believed to be the first Facebook offering to deal directly in cash rather than the site’s own exchange tokens, Facebook credits.

Members wishing to participate in the game will be asked to put down a minimum deposit of £10 – although they can put down any amount up to £500 if they so choose – and to provide bank and date of birth details.

Further monetary consideration games provided by Gamesys are also understood to be in the pipeline – together with plans to introduce poker, slot machine, and further bingo games from one of Facebook’s other gaming partners, Zynga.

An official statement from Facebook said:

“Real-money gaming is a popular and well-regulated activity in the UK, and we are allowing a partner to offer its games to adult users on the Facebook platform in a safe and controlled manner.”

Although Gamesys is registered in Gibraltar and therefore not currently subject to UK gambling regulations, the UK government is reported to be planning to ensure that in future all UK regulations will apply to any such service reaching UK consumers.