A Detailed Look at Jumpman Gaming
Jumpman Gaming has been around for more than a decade now in various forms. It is now an established player in the online gaming industry, with well over a hundred different bingo and casino brands operating on its platform.
Although now clearly a major operator in the global gaming industry, it continues to brand itself as an outsider. Even on its official website, Jumpman Gaming describe themselves as “disruptors”, rather than big gun industry insiders. But to what extent is this true, or is it just another piece of clever marketing?
The Early History of Jumpman
Officially, the company states that it was founded in 2012 and this may be true of its current form. But its roots go back a little longer than this – to 2009 and the formation of the now largely forgotten Bingo Vision group. Bingo was a major online phenomenon at this point, with new online bingo sites seemingly popping up every week to take advantage of a spectacular market surge.
Never the flashiest of titles, these early bingo sites were functional: they “did what it said on the tin”. They worked well and suited undemanding players who just wanted to get on with the game. But the industry was growing so fast that very soon these early brands began to look a little tired and unexciting.
The whole online industry was undergoing some massive changes during the early 2010s, and it seemed as if Bingo Vision was struggling to keep up. Online casinos, offering a more comprehensive service than just bingo, were more profitable and hoovering up players from the more functional bingo only brands. Many bingo sites attempted to compete by offering slots, then improving both their quality and quantity to try to tempt their bingo players to try something new.
But another technological leap forward was also on the way. Improvements in both telecommunications and software meant that playing games on mobile devices was becoming more feasible. This paved the way for the rapid growth in on the go play – to the point where the vast majority of gaming is now played on mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, with very little continuing to be played on old big box fixed screens like PCs and Macs.
This was a problem for the early Bingo Vision sites, which were relatively clunky and incompatible with the newly emerging and fast moving phone friendly brands. And this is where Jumpman Gaming came in, because it was at this point that the old company was rebranded to become the big name operator we know today.
Jumpman Gaming – A New Beginning
From 2012, the new company began to modernise to take advantage of the rapid growth of the online gaming industry. For the first few years, the company continued to focus on its bingo offerings, slowly modernising its sites and software to take advantage of the new opportunities in the market.
Jumpman Gaming may never have been the most innovative of companies, but what they are is unconventional. Rather than sticking to one network, the company began to operate two, seemingly quite separate strands. Its 15 Network has always been and remains a bingo operation, focusing on its reliable 90 and 75 ball bingo formats, with a decent range of slots alongside.
But as the market for online casinos rapidly expanded, the company launched a separate in-house strand – the Wheel of Slots network. Confusingly, this network included bingo sites too, so it was a kind of bingo / slot hybrid theme.
One thing that was common between the two was Jumpman Gaming’s unique (at the time) Mega Wheel. Instead of offering the usual conventional bonus structure touted by all its rivals, the company attempted to differentiate itself within the industry by offering this TV gameshow derived “wheel of fortune” game instead. Prizes awarded from a spin of the Mega Wheel included free slot spins and free bingo tickets.
This was perhaps a good way of enticing the more conservative bingo player into experimenting with slots, but the big advantage of the new wheel based promotion is that the player’s bonus did not come with the usual wagering requirement strings attached. The disadvantage was that there might not be a bonus at all!
Nevertheless, the new initiative worked well. So well that attempts were made by rivals to introduce something very similar. Both networks continue to offer this distinctive promotional tool. It clearly works: 15 Network, has grown to such an extent that it now has around forty different brands under its wing. Early releases have been followed by a steady stream of new brands, thereby increasing the reach of the network to its current medium sized status.
Meanwhile, its sister network the Wheel of Slots has also continued to expand, although the bingo sites amongst its number have gradually been closed or migrated over to its 15 Network sibling. Today, the Wheel of Slots network really is just for slots and other traditional casino games.
These sites now also have another unique Jumpman Gaming promotion: Trophies. This incentive works much like a conventional loyalty scheme, but linked to extra free spins on the ever popular, but rebranded Mega Reel.
The Current Jumpman Structure
Today, Jumpman Gaming is much more focused on its more profitable slot output. New sites are almost entirely slot based, and placed within yet another network, this time the eponymously named Jumpman Slots Network. Nevertheless, the company has maintained the vast majority of its existing bingo brands. A few closures have taken place, mostly of bingo brands previously located within its Wheel of Slots network.
The company continues to operate its own sites and brands, but increasingly now licences its software to other operators. It is difficult, if not impossible sometimes, to tell whether a specific brand is operated by Jumpman Gaming or licenced by an alternative operator. In practice, it makes little difference to the typical player in any case: the games available on each brand, plus the legalities and regulatory arrangements are much the same.
As an example, Amazon Slots, Dove Slots and Viking Bingo are operated directly by Jumpman Gaming, whilst Bingo Fling, Cheers Bingo and Dragon Slots are licenced by other operators. Jumpman Gaming’s licenced bingo and slot sites outnumber directly operated brands by a ratio of around 4:1.
In terms of the games on offer to its players, the company has signed up licencing deals with around a dozen of the best gaming software providers. This is not a comprehensive portfolio, when compared to many of its rivals, but then again, it is more than enough to provide a decent range of games. The Big Three are on board: NetEnt, Microgaming and the Scientific Games group, plus a selection of other innovative designers like Blueprint Gaming, Red Tiger and Yggdrasil. These provide a sprinkling of non-mainstream alternative titles to the usual popular favourites.
Payment facilities available to its players always include a good range of convenient options. Visa and MasterCard credit and debit cards are always accepted, together with popular alternatives like PayPal and Paysafecard. Pay by Phone is also regularly available.
All Jumpman Gaming operated and licenced bingo and slot sites are registered on the UK Channel Island of Alderney, and are licenced by the Alderney Gambling Control Commission. This means that all sites and brands are also fully regulated by the UK Gambling Commission, so they can be regarded as safe and fair to play for players based within the United Kingdom.
Jumpman Gaming – A Summary
While never really at the cutting edge of the industry, Jumpman Gaming have always offered just enough to keep up with business trends and to offer something different. They remain sufficiently distinctive from their competitors to be able to carve out a profitable niche within the industry.
Never the most innovative, they have nevertheless come up with some distinctive marketing ploys, most particularly their iconic Mega Wheel / Reel. Trophies too are an attempt to differentiate themselves from their competitors in what remains a very competitive market.
Jumpman Gaming certainly are not part of the industry mainstream, although describing themselves as “disruptors” may be taking things a bit far. Their “wheel of fortune” style promotion was an interesting and creative alternative to the conventional “free” bonuses which prevailed at the time, but it was hardly revolutionary.
Ultimately, they have managed to carve out a kind of middle of the road niche within the industry. Their offering suits players who are not necessarily looking for the very latest developments, but like the comfort of sticking with the tried and tested. Jumpman Gaming’s consistent but unspectacular brands remain very popular with their players, who value their reliability and unique qualities very highly.
The company is based on the UK Channel Island of Guernsey, and is responsible for the employment of around 100 people.