Categories
Poker

Chris Gayle to be the brand ambassador of DPT Colossus high roller poker tournament

Leading online poker website Adda52 has announced that star cricketer Chris Gayle will be the brand ambassador for the super high roller Deltin Poker Tournament (DPT) Colossus that will be held at the Deltin Royale Casino in Goa from 26th-29th April, 2018.

It is understood that Gayle will promote the DPT Colossus event and will also play the Rs. 2 lakh buy-in at Deltin Royale on 27th April.

The Caribbean superstar, who has played over 400 international games for West Indies and is currently representing Kings XI Punjab team in the Indian Premier League (IPL), is known to be an avid poker player and has played poker at various casinos.

Expressing excitement at Gayle’s presence in DPT, Anuj Gupta, CEO and founder of Adda52 noted, “We are very happy to have Chris Gayle playing the DPT Colossus in Goa. Can’t wait to see who knocks him out!”

Challenging participants to beat him in the tournament, Gayle commented, “The storm hits DPT Colossus in Goa! Am I seeing you at DPT Colossus?”

DPT is the bi-monthly poker tournament hosted by Delta Corp and Adda52 at the Deltin Royale casino in Goa. The DPT Colossus is a special high roller tournament that will have an estimated prize pool of over Rs. 2 crores. Five separate events will be hosted during the four day period, where players can participate in any or all of the tournament, which have buy-ins ranging from Rs. 20,000 to Rs. 2 lakhs.

Categories
Poker

Poker Yaar to offer tickets to MPN International Tournament in Sunny Beach Bulgaria

Online poker website Poker Yaar has announced that it would be participating in Microgaming Poker Network’s MPN International Poker Tournament that is scheduled to be hosted in Sunny Beach, Bulgaria from 5th-9th July, 2018.

The tournament in Bulgaria which has a whopping Rs. 1.2 crore guarantee, would see participation from Indian players who win satellites hosted on Pokeryaar.com

The main satellite would be hosted on Poker Yaar on 29th April at 10 pm and would have a buy-in of Rs. 6000. The winner of the satellites would get an all-inclusive VIP trip to Sunny Beach, Bulgaria. The All Inclusive VIP PACKAGE includes-

  1. Flights
  2. 4 Nights Accommodation
  3. INR 45000 Buy-in to the MPN Main Event
  4. All Meals & Drinks on the House
  5. Welcome Player Party
  6. 1 Day VIP Tour

Commenting on the decision to participate in Microgaming’s International Poker Tournament, Swapnil Chaturvedi, founder and Director of Club Empire Tech Pvt. Ltd. (the company that operates Poker Yaar) said, “We are super excited to bring MPN Tour to our players. Poker Yaar is staging its first ever International Poker event this July at Sunny Beach, Bulgaria with MPN. We’ll make sure our players get the best ever  experience.”

Welcoming Poker Yaar’s decision, Richard Cunningham Events Manager of Microgaming’s International Poker Tournament said, “We are really looking forward to welcoming our Indian online poker players to the live felt at the MPN Poker Tour Sunny Beach in Bulgaria this July, thanks to Poker Yaar. I’m sure they will enjoy being part of the amazing vibe, the great poker, our player party and VIP trip we have planned.”

Disclaimer: This post is a sponsored post and does not reflect the views or opinions of the authors of this website. Readers may treat this as an advertorial. 

Categories
Business Poker

Feature: PokerStars India CEO Ankur Dewani speaks about the company’s launch, vision and road ahead for poker

Exclusive In this exclusive interview, newly appointed CEO of Sachiko Gaming Pvt. Ltd (PokerStars India), Ankur Dewani, speaks about the company’s  vision in India, what is in store for players and the challenges that the poker industry will have to face.

Dewani has been associated with the gaming industry for more than a decade and before joining Sachiko Gaming has been PokerStar’s  Consultant Country Manager (India).

Sachiko Gaming which is part of the Sugal & Damani Group and has the license to use the PokerStars brand in India has started a new ring-fenced, Indian poker website, pokerstars.in today.

Full interview:

Q. Congrats on the announcement of the launch of PokerStars.in. The Stars Group had made several announcements in the past couple of years about its intention of entering the Indian market and timelines. However, the launch has been delayed by few months. What took them so long?

Ankur Dewani (AD): Thank you! It’s very exciting to finally see the PokerStars brand come to India. As you can imagine, there is a great amount of preparation that needs to go into setting up a fully customized and local platform, and as much as it would have been great to have launched sooner, it’s good to take the time to get it right.

Q. Sachiko launching PokerStars.in  has obviously caused a flutter amongst existing online poker operators. Can you give us details about the software and product as well as how it would be different from the other Indian offerings?

AD: We are glad to be part of this small, but rapidly growing skill gaming community, and I think the fraternity would only welcome any addition that supports growth for our players and the entire ecosystem.

PokerStars.in provides a solid foundation for the domestic poker market which is important for long-term industry growth. By bringing the PokerStars platform to India, we aim to set a high standard in the hope that others will use this as a recognized benchmark. The PokerStars platform has received global recognition and numerous awards over the years, and is known for its industry-leading responsible gaming mechanisms, with second to none player protection and fraud detection mechanisms to ensure the integrity of games and the safety of players.

Our objective is always to provide the players with a secure, trusted and memorable gaming experience.

Q. Can you share some details on the offers and promotions that PokerStars India has launched or is planning to launch?

AD: We have an array of exciting offers for players. As part of our launch celebration, we’re giving away Rs. 13 in Freerolls, in addition to over Rs. 70 lacs in guaranteed tournaments in the first five days itself!

Players will have an opportunity to benefit from our first deposit bonus offers, one of which will be a match bonus of Rs. 30,000, i.e. a player can deposit any amount up to Rs. 30,000 and we’ll match that amount and add to their deposit as a bonus. I believe this is the biggest any Indian poker site, or gaming site for that matter, has ever offered here.

Q. Would PokerStars be launching any poker leagues or offline tournament series?

AD: We are always looking at ways to bring the best experiences to our players. Watch this space!

Q. Is PokerStars India planning to launch any other game apart from poker, like rummy, quiz or fantasy sports?

AD: We will offer poker only.

Q. In terms of licenses and permissions, has Sachiko Gaming obtained any license from any state government?

AD: We are in talks with various government and state bodies, but it’s probably too early to indicate what the outcome will be. What I can say is we are fully pro licensing and committed to working with the industry and the government on appropriate regulation.

Q. There have been many concerns from players regarding the Tax Deducted at Source (TDS) policies. Can you explain to our readers in simple terms as to what would be the TDS policy that Sachiko Gaming would follow?

AD: We refer and adhere to the applicable tax as clearly mentioned in section 194B of the Income Tax act. i.e. there is a 30% tax on any winnings over Rs. 10,000 at the time of payment of such prizes, without provision for any deductions & or offsets.

To break it down a bit further, here’s an example:

  • Let’s assume a player deposits 5000, from which he uses 2000 towards a tournament entry, and goes on to win 15,000 by the end of the session. Their balance is now 15,000 + 3000 (unused deposit).
  • If the player were to request a withdrawal of their complete balance in form of a real money payment, we would deduct 30% on their winnings of Rs. 15,000 & refund their balance unused deposits as is.

Q. Poker in India has seen a few setbacks in terms of adverse judicial and legislative decisions. What is your take on the current position of the legality of online poker and in which direction do you see the discourse on legality headed?

AD: Unlike chess, rummy, bridge and other such skills games, poker in comparison is fairly new to India, and will understandably need some time before it is fully understood by the people and lawmakers. Sure, there will be challenges, and it is our duty to educate and work with the government to provide information, case studies, research reports, to ensure states and the central government understand this beautiful mind sport.

Having said that, some states (West Bengal, Karnataka, among others) have been quick to react and duly recognize Poker as a game of skill, making it fully legal and regulated.

Q. Finally, you are an avid poker player and observer of the gaming industry in India. While both online and offline poker has grown exponentially with the number of players, prize pools and number of operators seeing massive increase, there have been various setbacks for the industry as well. What are you parting thoughts on how the industry will progress in the next couple of years?

AD: I have been involved with poker since 2009 and had been playing for 4-5 years before then. As a competitive gamer it’s one of, if not the toughest games I have ever come across. It requires a wealth of skills ranging from calculating probability/odds, mental math, decision making, psychological strengthening, patience, ability to read people and so much more. I am still a student.

But all of this stems from the need to compete at a high level and hopefully excel! To me, this is the underlying theme of our youth today and what makes us Indians so hard working and prepared to constantly push our boundaries.

65% of our population is below the age of 35, and by 2020 the average age is set to be about 29 years. If even a small percentage of this entire age take up poker, the industry will see a new boom and  we hope that we can bridge that gap by educating the masses.

Categories
Poker

Viswanathan Anand to preside over PSL Season 2 opening ceremony on 15th April

Legendary chess player Viswanathan Anand would be the chief guest at a lavish ceremony to unveil the teams that would be participating in the second edition of the Poker Sports League (PSL). Anand would also be unveiling the league’s trophy that would be awarded to the winners next month.

Anand, who has been roped in as PSL’s brand ambassador and has likened the game of poker to chess, will  be making his first media appearance along with the co-founders to announce the 12 teams for this season and will also unveil the winning trophy on 15th April at the PlayBoy Club in Hotel Samrat, New Delhi.

It is understood that Anand will also be aggressively promoting PSL’s format and the game through videos, social media as well as print and electronic media.

Promoted by Adda52 (subsidiary of Delta Corp) and Dabur vice chairman Amit Burman, PSL is a city-based poker league that allows players to compete against one another in various formats of poker for a cash prize.

The first edition of the league was held last year at the Deltin Royale Casino in Goa in May last year and had a prize money of Rs. 3.36 crores. Delhi Panthers came on the top in last year’s event and took home  Rs. 1.15 crores. Mumbai Anchors finished as runner-ups with the prize money of Rs. 1 crore, while Kolkata Royals and Punjab Bluffers finished third and fourth respectively.

This year’s edition of the league will be hosted next month and would see twelve teams compete against one another for a total prize pool of Rs. 3.60 crores.  The league will be live streamed on Facebook and will be telecast on sports channel DSport (part of the Discovery TV network) in June.

Categories
Poker

Viaan Industries launches new Online Team Poker League with Rs. 13 crore prize money

Raj Kundra promoted Viaan Industries has announced the launch of a new Online Team Poker League (OTPL) in a bid to promote e-sports and online poker in the country.

OTPL India, which will feature 30 city-based teams that will be given out to franchisees, will be played in the No Limit Texas Hold ’em format of poker on a special app designed by Viaan Industries.

Viaan Industries is selling franchisee rights for each team by charging an annual license fee of Rs. 55 lakhs, of which Rs. 10 lakhs is payable upfront and the balance payable quarterly. As per news reports,  15 teams have been sold by Viaan Industries till date and the company claims that the remaining 15 teams will be sold soon.

As per the format of the game announced by the company in a press release, every team will have eight players who will play Sit-N-Go tournaments online, twice a month, to top the leader board. The collective chip count of all team players will be added up, giving the monthly rankings of teams and monthly prizes. The team with the most chip count at the end of the season in November will win the cup and a prize money of Rs. 6.6 crores will be shared among the top eight teams.

Besides the annual prize money, there would be a monthly prize money of Rs. 60 lakhs each for all 11 months (totaling to Rs. 6.6 crores) of the tournament, which will be shared by the top six teams of the month.

While the first season will start in July and end in November, from the next year, it will be spread over January to November. The winning team will represent the country in the World Online Team Poker League to be held in December every year.

The company has claimed that besides India, it will be launching similar city-based OTPL events in other countries like USA, UK, Israel etc.

Besides OTPL, Viaan Industies already operates Match Indian Poker League (Match IPL) in collaboration with the International Federation of Match Poker (IFMP), where 10 city based teams compete against one another in the ‘match poker’ format for prize money and to win a spot to play in IFMP’s International leagues.  The second season of the league was recently held in Kolkata.

Commenting on the launch of OTPL, Raj Kundra, the Chairman and Managing Director of Viaan Industries said in a statement,  “After seeing the success of Match Indian Poker League we at Viaan Industries Ltd, created this IP to have a year long poker event to give the opportunity to more poker players to come forward and use this platform to showcase their skills. We have designed the app to support and promote OTPL worldwide. It will create an exciting Poker in a team format that’s never been seen or done before. In December we will have the World Online Team Poker League (WOTPL) where the league winners of every country will play against each other in a one-day online world cup event.”

Categories
Legal & Regulatory Poker

After dramatic last minute intervention by Salman Khan’s lawyer, Bombay HC does not mention the word ‘poker’ in order

Exclusive The order of the division bench of the Bombay High Court declining The Spartan Poker’s head of operations, Nasir Patel’s plea to quash a gambling FIR against him has been released online.

The order dated 28th March, 2018, passed by a division bench of Justices RM Savant and Sarang Kotwal states:

It is alleged that the Petitioner herein is one of the accused who was found playing the game of “Cards”. We have perused the F.I.R. which gives the description as to how the said game is played. On such perusal, we find that in the said game, as described in the F.I.R., there is no element of skill and it appears to be purely a game of chance and the winner is chosen on the basis of cards, which are received by him on distribution in the said game and the winner also receives the prize in cash on the said basis.

Having regard to the said aspect, prima facie, we find that the ingredients of the offence under the Prevention of Gambling Act, 1887 is made out.

Interestingly, however, the judges in their verbal observations had mentioned the game of poker and not the game of ‘cards’ during the course of the hearing. It is understood that Senior Counsel Amit Desai (who was also actor Salman Khan’s lawyer in the Bombay High Court in the famous hit and run case) mentioned the matter before the bench on Monday, 2nd April, and urged the bench to change its observations, particularly regarding the game of poker.

The court appears to have partially accepted Desai’s plea and refrained from referring to the game of ‘poker’ in the order. However, the court refers to the description of the game in the FIR against Patel. It may be noted that the FIR mentions that the game of poker was being conducted in the premises and therefore the order of the High Court contains an indirect reference to the game of poker.

Online poker operators and poker enthusiasts can take solace from the fact that the order directly and categorically does not declare poker to be a game of chance, although question marks still prevail over the game’s legality.

Categories
Legal & Regulatory Poker

Bombay HC rules poker to be a game of chance

In a surprising ruling, a division bench of the Bombay High Court ruled that playing the game of poker amounts to gambling and is a game of pure chance, as per a report in DNA.

A division bench of the High Court comprising of Justices RM Sawant and Sarang Kotwal observed that poker cannot be a game of skill as a player simply gets the cards according to chance and the player who gets better cards wins.

According to media reports, the bench further noted: “We have perused the description of the game, we find that it is not a game of skill but of pure chance. Prima facie we find that a case under the gambling act has been made out.”

The court accordingly  refused to quash the FIR under the Maharashtra Prevention of Gambling Act filed by the Goregaon police against The Spartan Poker head of operations, Nasir Patel, who was allegedly found playing poker in a private apartment in 2016. The High Court had earlier stayed filing of chargesheet against Patel on the grounds that the copy of the petition served by Patel’s lawyer on the public prosecutor was not legible.

Patel in his petition has made a threefold argument seeking quashing of the FIR which names him as an accused. The first argument raised by him is that the game of poker was being played amongst friends in a private premises for entertainment purposes only, without any money or stakes.

Secondly, he pleaded that no license or permission is required for playing poker in a private premises amongst friends and that there was no law or rule violated in playing the game of poker. The third argument raised is that poker is a game of skill, exempt from the ambit of gambling under the Maharashtra Prevention of Gambling Act.

His lawyer Ram Mani Upadhyay also submitted that the game of poker has been recognised by the High Courts of Karnataka and Calcutta. The public prosecutor on the other hand relied on the order of the single judge of the Gujarat High Court that ruled poker to be a game of chance that fell within the ambit of the Bombay Prevention of Gambling Act.

A copy of the order and the exact ruling of the court has not been published yet. The decision of the court is however certainly going to be a huge setback for poker in India as it comes months after the Gujarat High Court’s judgement (which is now in appeal before a division bench of the same court).

Categories
Poker

Breaking news: PokerStars India website to start operations on 17th April

Exclusive Rational Intellectual Holdings Limited and its India licensee, Sachiko Gaming Private Limited have announced that the PokerStars India website will commence operations on 17th April, 2018, as per an update posted on the pokerstars.in website.

As per the update, Sachiko Gaming has claimed that the world’s largest poker brand will be live very soon and will be available only to India residents. To celebrate the launch of the India platform, PokerStars has also announced a Rs. 10 lakhs freeroll on 22nd April, 2018.

Further, as per the pokerstars.in website, ‘PokerStars’, the ‘Spade logo’ and all other trademarks, service marks and logos associated with the brand have been licensed to Sachiko Gaming Pvt. Ltd. for use within the territory of India.

Glaws was the first website to break the news about PokerStars partnering with lottery conglomerate Sugal & Damani’s Sachiko Gaming Pvt. Ltd. When the news was broken on 15th March, 2018, Glaws had also informed its readers that the launch date of pokerstars.in will be announced in a matter of weeks.

Categories
Poker

Brand new gaming experience at PokerDangal [Sponsored]

Indian poker industry is abuzz with new entrants. In last 2 years more than 6 new Poker platforms have emerged. One platform which packs the most punches is PokerDangal. PokerDangal, which is flagship product of Xeta Networks Pvt Ltd, went live in October 2017 and true to its name, it provides extensive action packed games at cash tables and tournaments.

In this competitive industry, PokerDangal has been rapidly growing and carving out a brand new experience to the Indian consumers. Founders of PokerDangal come from a diverse background which has really helped PokerDangal to create an alternate strategy.

Speaking on the vision of the company, co-founder Karan Gandhi said, “We believe in providing best customer support and creating best ecosystem towards action oriented Poker in India.

Showcasing the pro-player approach, we have educated several new players and nurtured new talent. We have been doing our marketing efforts and putting all our energies to spend awareness about the sport to bring it mainstream. To comfort the new players we have the best bonus and promotions in the Indian poker market and quickest turnaround for resolving the queries of our players. Even in these initial days, we are successfully processing more than 1200 cash outs in a month with average turnaround time of 11.2 hours.”

Bonus and promotions:

  • Sign-up bonus: Any new player registering on PokerDangal using the code “WELCOME” gets INR 50 as promo chips plus tickets to freeroll tournaments worth INR 50000. Essentially, without depositing anything, a player who has just registered, stands a chance to win upto INR50000 which is the best offering to a newly registered player on any Indian Poker platform.
  • Welcome Bonus: The new players are greeted with an amazing welcome bonus of 150% on their first deposit. Using code “DANGAL150” the player can avail 50% Instant Real Cash Bonus upto INR 2500 and 100% locked upto INR 5000. Any player who deposits INR 500 or more, also stands a chance to win upto INR 75000 on the Depositors free roll.

For its regular players, PokerDangal offers other amazing promotions like:

Free Monthly pass – Any player depositing INR15000, get’s tickets for all tournaments in the entire month( Prize GTD of INR 5Lacs+), free of cost and Instant Real Cash Bonus of 30%. While depositing, the players need to use “MEGAPRIL”.

Weekly pass, Monday bonus, Friday bonus, bad beats bonus, royal flush bonus, etc. which motivate players from all over the country to build their poker skills and make money out of it. The promo codes are available on PokerDangal itself. The players can keep checking for more exciting bonus updates on the website and all social media channels.

Customer and Support:

Team Poker Dangal believes that customer support is the key to success. The customer support service at Poker Dangal is exceptionally brilliant with personalized service to each of its players. Team PokerDangal can be contacted over multiple channels (phone, WhatsApp, email, Facebook chat etc.) as mentioned at their customer support page. They also have a detailed FAQ section which will help new players to resolve their queries.
The best feature about PokerDangal is that now your favourite game is available for download on all devices like android, windows, and iPhone. Apart from this, they have an instant play feature which allows the player the access to their favourite game in the browser itself.

Payment and security:

Poker Dangal accepts various payment options. Amid the card options Visa, MasterCard, and Maestro are accepted while e-wallets include FreeCharge, Olamoney, MobiKwik, PayUmoney and cashfree. The modes of payment offered are safe and the website has received security certification from various platforms which makes the site safe and secure for the players.

The website is SSL encrypted with certifications from BMM and GoDaddy which makes it a reliable and safe platform to play on.

PokerDangal is one of the fastest rising star of the online poker industry disrupting it by providing unique and amazing online Poker gaming experience. Catering to its players from all over the country, it is changing the gaming platform to a whole new level. Register now!

#AbDangalHoga

Disclaimer: This post is a sponsored post and does not reflect the views or opinions of the authors of this website. Readers may treat this as an advertorial. 

Categories
Poker

PokerStars partners with Sugal & Damani Group for India website

Exclusive Canada-based The Stars Group Inc. (earlier known as Amaya Gaming Group) has partnered with lottery and gaming conglomerate, Sugal & Damani, for its India-facing online poker website pokerstars.in.

WhoIs records indicate that the domain name pokerstars.in is owned by Kolkata-registered Sachiko Gaming Private Limited, which is an offshoot of Mumbai-based online skill games company Sachar Gaming Private Limited and is learnt to be connected to lottery conglomerate, Sugal and Damani Group.

Registrar of Companies (ROC) records indicate that both Sachar and Sachiko Gaming have the same directors, viz. Hardik Parekh and Keval Parekh. As per the Memorandum of Association (MoA) of Sachiko Gaming, the primary objective of the company is ‘doing business and marketing of online gaming platform and e-commerce trades with associates and direct customers’. Sachar Gaming, through its representative Hardik Parekh, owns 99% shares in Sachiko Gaming.

Sachar Gaming currently operates the rummy website khelplayrummy and until very recently used to operate a poker portal, khelplay. The company recently announced that it would be shutting down its khelplay poker operations by 15th March, presumably to facilitate PokerStars’ India entry. Known as a diversified conglomerate, Sugal & Damani has business interests in lotteries, hospitality, real estate, information technology and financial services. The Group has in news reports and presentations, claimed that it operates skill games websites under the brand ‘khelplay.’

A message on pokerstars.in website just states ‘coming soon’ without giving any details about the expected date of launch. Sources however inform that the website could start operations within the next few weeks.

The Stars Group, which operates the world’s largest poker website, PokerStars, has over the past couple of years, repeatedly announced that its intention of entering the Indian market with a licensed local partner and had earlier announced that it would start India operations by the end of 2017.

In June 2017, The Stars Group CEO Rafi Ashkenazi had said, “We want to be there in time and we want to make sure that we are, as usual, the market leader when it comes to poker.”Ashkenazi had further estimated that the Indian poker market would be worth around US$150 million per year and growing. PokerStars expects to corner a large share of this market.

While the exact structure of PokerStars’ India business has not been clarified by either parties, The Stars Group’s decision to enter India, whether directly or indirectly, is likely to open a Pandora’s box as far as issues regarding the legality of online poker and foreign investment or technical collaboration in the industry are concerned.