The Global Poker League (GPL) increased its international footprint this week thanks to a deal with China’s leading sports platform.
Despite some teething troubles with the initial broadcasts, the GPL is now in full swing and the poker community is starting to show the interest its founder Alex Dreyfus hoped it would.
With the matches already streaming across various platforms, including Amazon Fire, XBOX, Twitch, and PokerCentral, the GPL now has an additional home on China’s Sina Sports.
GPL to Become a Major Player in China
In an effort to expose the best tournament players in the world to the largest country in the world, Dreyfus has agreed to a long-term deal that will make Sina Sports the official digital media partner of the GPL.
As part of the deal, Sina Sports will launch a new poker platform alongside sports such as soccer, basketball, and tennis. Dominating the new poker channel will be regular coverage of the GPL that will include more than 400 hours of live coverage.
Beyond the live streams, the GPL will create specially localized content for the Chinese market to ensure the results, stories and personalities are relevant and appealing to the local demographic.
In addition to working with Sina Sports, the GPL is also partly backed by Ceyuan Capital and Head and Shoulders Capital, two major companies in China.
These partnerships, as well as the new deal with Sina Sports, will see the GPL become one of the premium poker products in China and, potentially, across Asia as a whole.
A Chance to Create New Poker Fan
According to the stats, more than 40 million users visit Sina Sport’s website via their desktop and mobiles on a daily basis making it the fourth largest site in the country according to Alexa’s rankings.
This volume of traffic should not only generate a massive amount of interest in the GPL among Chinese poker fans but among poker fans around the world.
“The time is right for a league like the GPL to enter China. Chinese people are used to poker-style games and are looking for more diverse ways to play. Not only will GPL attract new sports fans, but it will attract a following from Chinese people that may not consider themselves traditional sports fans,” said Sina Sport’s General Manager and Senior Vice President, Arthur Wei.
The first round of GPL coverage of Sina Sports will commence next month when fans of the game will be able to see live streams and written coverage from matches involving the Hong Kong Stars, Moscow Wolverines, and the London Royals.