WSOPE Gets French Revolution

Posted at 12:31 2011-02-11

A French Revolution is on the cards for the World Series of Poker Europe (WSOPE), with one of Europe’s most prestigious tournaments set to move from London to Casino Barriere de Cannes Croiset in Cannes, France.

Of course Cannes is home to the famous annual film festival, and also boasts a poker room capable of hosting 75 tables at the luxurious Hotel Majestic Barriere which will house a large number of the players during the tournament series.

The move is the latest push into France for Caesars Interactive Entertainment, who see the area as a potential giant in the poker industry. French players have for years flocked to sites such as Everest Poker and, in more recent times with regulation, to exclusive French poker sites. PokerStars.fr is reportedly the seventh largest poker site online. Caesars look keen to get a slice of the pie with a new strategic partnership set up with BarrierePoker.fr to be the major online satellite provider for the event.

There is also exciting times ahead for both French players and the wider poker community with WSOP.Fr to be launched later this year. The launch of that site, along with the excitement of hosting the WSOPE, and more easily accessible satellites (both live and online) should see a dramatic rise in the number of French players making the trip to Las Vegas for future WSOP events.

Caesars Entertainment representative Ty Stewart explained the move from the owner’s perspective. “France is just absolutely white-hot for poker right now, so we’re very confident the turnout in participation is going to go up. For us it was a lot about the venue and the partnership. We’re talking about an unbelievable set of partners as far as the type of system they’ll put behind the WSOPE including relaunching the Barrière Poker Tour to be a qualification series. They also have a large number of casinos and a big database that they’re going to be able to market to bring new customers to the event. We’re even going to have a scratch-off lottery ticket for the WSOPE to qualify folks for the event” said Stewart.

Interestingly Stewart broached the idea of the World Series of Poker moving venues every few years to support growth and development of poker throughout various European target markets. This year’s WSOPE will have seven official land-based satellite properties to ensure a bumper field in Europe’s marquee tournament.

On the same day, Caesars Interactive Entertainment also announced an expansion of the schedule which will move to seven bracelet events, up from the previous five that were on offer at the 2010 WSOPE. The event will be held in Cannes between October 7-21, 2011.

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Australian Jeff Lisandro with his WSOPE Bracelet from 2010 Australian Jeff Lisandro with his WSOPE Bracelet from 2010

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