Ready to Party: Partypoker US/BetMGM Director Luke Staudenmaier Talks Company Shift As March Poker Mania Approaches
The March Poker Mania kicks off for online poker players on Sunday at the partypoker US Network. The series promises 19 events in each state (New Jersey, Michigan, and Pennsylvania) with buy-ins ranging from $55 to $1,060 and $1.3 million guaranteed across the three markets.
The series is also available to players on the BetMGM and Borgata Poker skins. March Poker Mania offers a look at where partypoker US may be heading with bigger series and unique names and tournaments.
With that in mind, BetMGM/partypoker US director of poker Luke Staudenmaier recently spoke with USPoker about some of the news from the network.
♠♠♠ For a complete preview and schedules for March Poker Mania, click here. ♠♠♠
Ramping up the action at partypoker
In recent months, partypoker US has found a nice stride. That’s included some nice revenue reports, especially some gains in New Jersey.
Party also seems to have rebranded its monthly Online Series into more distinct festivals with a wide variety of events. March Poker Mani, February’s Bounty Blitz, and January’s Double Trouble serve as examples of that.
“We want to make our players – and the players in the U.S. at large – excited about the game of poker and we’ve found that variety in our month-to-month offers helps to pique their interest,” Staudenmaier says. “We want our players to recognize us as thoughtful and innovative, just like players themselves when making decisions at the table.”
Those interesting names also make series more memorable and meaningful to players. The company has also added to its US ambassador ranks with four-time World Poker Tour champion Darren Elias coming on board in September.
Poker pro and coach Matt Berkey and vlogger Andrew Neeme have also been recruited as hosts for the upcoming March Poker Mania. This offers a bit of a twist to this latest series.
Players can also look forward to a $1,060 Heads-up “Bracket Battle.” The event is capped at 32 players and should make for an interesting event.
More partnerships on the horizon
Partypoker US Network is owned by Roar Digital, a partnership between Entain (owner of the international partypoker) and MGM Resorts.
Having MGM as an owner offers partypoker US some synergy with the Borgata casino in Atlantic City. The property has become one of the biggest poker meccas on the eastern seaboard.
Partypoker, with the BetMGM and Borgata Poker skins, has regularly offered qualifiers for some of Borgata’s major series. Staudenmaier sees more of that cooperation continuing in the future.
“As live events ramp back up, our omni-channel relationships allow us a literal seat at the table,” he says. “During this month’s March Poker Mania, Borgata – a fantastic property with a history of offering prestigious poker events – will be the location of Spring Poker Rebound, hosted by Darren Elias.
“It’s safe to say that you’ll see us partnering with MGM Resorts properties, as health and safety precautions allow, to meet and engage with players across the country.”
Partypoker reaches out to players
The WPT has also not only partnered with partypoker in the past internationally, but also with the American platform. In 2020, Tony Sinishtaj won the WPT Borgata Online for $77,350. The event proved popular with players in New Jersey.
“We were grateful to work with WPT, a storied and trusted poker brand, numerous times over the last two years,” Staudenmaier says. “While there are no current plans for another WPT event online, we’re constantly evaluating new ways to collaborate with industry partners, grow the game of poker, and present different offerings to our players.”
With so much in the works, Staudenmaier says the company remains committed to pleasing players and bringing more to the table. So far, those efforts seem to be paying off and Staudenmaier says player input is appreciated.
“Even when festivals or series focus on a variant that isn’t a player’s preference, we’ve received great community feedback – particularly since they know that they’ll be listened to,” he says. “This also helps players look forward to what comes next.”