First foray into blockchain protocols for WPT

World Poker Tour Partners With Blockchain Sports Betting Startup FansUnite

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The World Poker Tour (WPT) and FansUnite today announced the creation of a global partnership.

It’s the second major branding alliance for FansUnite, a Vancouver startup with big aspirations in online gambling.

What is FansUnite?

FansUnite is an award-winning Ethereum blockchain protocol that is “revolutionizing the sports betting world,” according to the press release.

It is one of many new gambling platforms rooted in cryptocurrency, theoretically allowing for increased security and microscopic operator margins. FansUnite plans to run its sportsbook at margins of just one percent.

In addition to sports betting functionality, the platform is capable of powering daily fantasy sports, online poker, and a variety of other applications that rely on sports/gaming data. It’s well funded, too, generating Series A financing of $4.45 million CAD.

The FansUnite protocol is currently in its alpha testing stages, with a public token sale anticipated later this year. Advisors include former NFL player Ryan Mundy, cryptocurrency pioneer Peter Kroll, and WPTDeepStacks founder Chris Torina.

This partnership with the WPT appears to be a straightforward marketing deal, but it creates some room for innovation in this world of expanding sports betting.

FansUnite + WPT

FansUnite becomes an official partner for the WPT, alongside watchmaker Hublot. It’s the tour’s first foray into the world of the blockchain.

Here’s what the deal encompasses:

  • Integration into Season XV broadcasts in Europe
  • “Plays of the Week” showcased on Super Channel in Canada
  • Social media cross-promotion
  • On-site promotions at WPT events in Europe and Asia
  • WPT tie-ins with other FansUnite partnerships

The two parties are still finalizing the details of the broadcast arrangement, but expect to see FansUnite branding on screen if you’re watching in Europe. The company will also have a physical presence at WPT events outside the US.

“We are thrilled to introduce FansUnite to the WPT’s millions of poker players and fans across the globe through television, digital media, live events, and more,” said WPT CEO Adam Pliska. “We look forward to furthering strategic partnership integrations and activations with FansUnite.”

FansUnite scooping up partners

The WPT is one of two big-ticket partners FansUnite has lined up in the past two months.

In August, the company became an official partner for Leicester City Football Club of the European Premier League. Together, they will run promotions and giveaways, offering exclusive content within the FansUnite platform.

Both new partnerships are aimed at getting the FansUnite brand in front of prospective customers in advance of launch.

Here’s CEO Darius Eghdami on the WPT:

“Over the last two decades the World Poker Tour has been at the forefront of gaming entertainment. WPT’s worldwide reach, instant name recognition, hundreds of thousands of players and millions of fans make them the class of their industry.

“This partnership introduces FansUnite to millions of poker fans across the globe, and gives WPT partners the first look at our industry-changing technology.”

The company’s roadmap targets European licensure in Q4 and full launch in early 2019.

- Eric is a reporter and writer covering regulated US gambling, sports betting, and DFS. He comes from a poker background, formerly on staff at PokerNews and the World Poker Tour.
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