In this column, we deliver you the latest and most interesting online poker industry news from across the world and all platforms.
WPT Online action on partypoker
The World Poker Tour (WPT) and partypoker have teamed up once again to offer some more online action in lieu of live events.
One of the most popular stops on the live circuit is the WPT Montreal. As it doesn’t look like we are going back to a normal live poker schedule any time soon, partypoker and WPT are now offering this event online. It will surely not be the same, but better than nothing.
The festival will run between 10th and 20th January 2021 and the CA$3,200 Main Event will have a CA$ 2 million guarantee. As always there are multiple ways to qualify for this event through partypoker satellites.
In addition to this, the WPT Online has launched in the segregated market of Spain and France and is still running until 16th November. It has €2 million in total guarantees across all 126 tournaments (3 buy-in tiers).
MPL Poker: India’s largest poker platform
Poker in India is a tricky thing, but as it turns out, an Indian skill-based mobile gaming platform claims to be incredibly successful.
Mobile Premier League (MPL) is a real money mobile gaming platform for the Indian market. As we know, India has the second largest population in the world with 1.35 billion inhabitants. It comes as no surprise really that a dedicated Indian app can allegedly amass 60 million users and sit within the top ten online poker rooms.
We write “allegedly” as there is no official tracking for the cash games tables on MPL. Online poker was only added in December last year. Other games the app is offering are skill-based. For example rummy, quizzes, crosswords or fantasy sports are on offer.
About 15-20% of the cash game traffic that is visible in the client comes from the nano-stakes tables with blinds as low as INR 0.1/0.2 ($0.0013/$0.0026).
Imagine the grind through these stakes and finally ending up in the big major events of the world where millions of dollars can be won. We’ll surely hear the stories soon.
KKPoker’ Jackpot Sit & Gos
KKPoker is a new real money platform. It’s a mobile based poker app offering the same private club experiences than the hugely popular PPPoker and Pokerbros. KKPoker is fully licensed and regulated by the Isle of Man Gambling SuperVision Commission.
KKPoker has now announced that they are going to offer their version of Jackpot Sit & Gos, called SpinUp. Just as most other Jackpot Sit & Go variants these are 3-handed tournaments and a prize will be spun before the game starts – this can be up to 10,000x the buy-in.
There are still some freerolls running until 10th November. Log into KKPoker to claim a free SpinUp ticket.
Unibet Online Series X
For the fourth time this year, we will see a Unibet Online Series. This is the tenth installment of the festival with a €1 million guarantee and once again combined with the Unibet Open Online.
It will run from 22nd November to 13th December and include 132 events. The events will have four buy-in levels from €0.25 to €1,100. The latter buy-in, for example, being the one for the €250,000 guaranteed Main Event.
And once again Unibet is throwing in some additional €32,000 for some promotions on the side for leaderboards, the Bubble Burster Showdown, Mystery Tournaments, and the Unibet Open Quiz.
Microgaming back offering poker – sort of
Five months ago the Microgaming Poker Network (MPN) closed its doors. Back then it was hinted that it won’t be the end for poker at Microgaming though. Now we know what was probably meant by that.
There will not be a new poker room being offered on the platform. Instead, a casino-poker hybrid is born, creatively named Hold’em Poker.
Microgaming CEO John Coleman explains in a press release: “Hold’Em Poker will add a new dimension to our online casino vertical, introducing a range of fun and exciting poker games to our platform. Designed to appeal to both poker and casino players, these games will deliver even further choice to our customers as we continue to diversify and innovate our content offering.”
The screenshots and features will remind you of the old Fish Party (MPN’s Jackpot Sit & Gos). The games will have a €5 buy-in, a prize is spun at the “prize pool generator” and there is a progressive jackpot starting from €25,000.
The game will launch on 9th December, so there is still a bit of waiting time. That gives us a bit of time to fully understand the modes of this game as a casino game – Is it played against the house or against other players?
André Akkari’s Furia partners with PokerStars
Poker player André Akkari has lifetime cashes of over $2.67 million in live tournaments alone and currently ranks as the 629th most successful player in poker history.
Many might know the Brazilian simply as a member of Team PokerStars. He is in fact involved in many business endeavours in Brazil and beyond. An interesting character with more passion than most of us can ever even dream of.
He became an investor for the eSports team Furia in August of 2017 when the team was formed by Akkari and fellow Brazilians Jaime ‘raizen’ Pádua and Crisitan Guedes. Furia is a United States-based team and has now joined forces with PokerStars.
“The team at Furia work very hard, lead by example, and are always looking to improve and evolve,” said Rebecca McAdam Willetts, Associate Director of Public Relations at ‘Stars. “This approach, as well as their general ethos, sits extremely well with what we aim for at PokerStars. It will be exciting for us to see what we can bring our community and how we can engage new audiences by working together with such a passionate team.”
Akkari himself said, “Poker plays a natural part in Furia’s DNA. It’s all about making optimal decisions in the moment for long-term results. The partnership is a natural step for expansion as we look to move beyond eSports.”
A successful crossover of poker and eSports has long been sought-after. It will be interesting to see what this partnership will deliver for both industries.