In what is seen as a major boost to poker in Asia, leading provider of internet services on a global scale Tencent, has reached a multi-year deal with Caesars Interactive Entertainment’s World Series of Poker (WSOP) to propagate the game’s most popular brand in Asia.
This deal could prove to be major milestone in the development and spread of the popular card game as after being based in America for numerous years and visiting continents such as Latin America, Europe, and Australia, the biggest poker festival in the world has now cast its eye on China.
“I’m incredibly excited and proud to stand here today. We’ve joined forces with Tencent to bring the number one trophy in all of poker to China. The 10-year agreement is the longest in history and we work together to make poker the biggest it’s ever been. WSOP China will begin this year, in December,” said Ty Stewart, Executive Director of WSOP.
“Together we hope to inspire and educate the next generation of competitive players and provide an opportunity for anyone to become a world champion,” he further added.
“There is so much untapped potential in Asia and we’ve found the perfect partner in Tencent to help spread the great game throughout the entire continent,” Stewart stated on WSOP.com. “We plan to use the WSOP brand and our expertise, along with Tencent’s reach in Asia, to inspire the next generation.”
For the first time in the festival’s history, WSOP will concoct a program for Tencent to help train and certify poker tournament staff and offer expertise on event structures, equipment, rules, procedures, etc., to make sure any live poker events in Asia match the global standards of the WSOP.
Tencent has additionally been granted exclusive merchandise rights to the WSOP brand in the Asian subcontinent. Also, it plans to promote the interest of the game in a variety of new ways. Tencent will have production and media content distribution rights that include live streaming of events.
“We are very excited to partner with WSOP and hope to leverage our expertise in eSports to bring new innovations to the competitive game of poker,” said Jerry Chen, Corporate Vice-President of Tencent Group & President of Quantum & Lightspeed Studio Group.
WSOP will help Tencent to run programs efficiently and offer guests with first-rate poker experience. Upon the declaration, Tencent is now planning the first-ever WSOP China online qualifiers through its Tencent Poker app in August 2017, with the first WSOP China event slated to begin in December 2017. This is excellent news for those who play poker online in the Asian subcontinent.
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