PokerStars Signs Six Ambassadors, Two Streamers to Help Engage Pennsylvanians

PokerStars has added six new ambassadors to its roster, two of whom will help further the company’s regional efforts in Pennsylvania.

PokerStars ambassadors

PokerStars has signed some familiar and not-so-familiar names to help engage more players around the world. (Image: PokerStars)

English pro Sam Grafton and Canada’s Parker Talbot headline the site’s latest list of recruits. Poker fans will also be familiar with André Coimbra who left Team PokerStars in 2017, but who has returned with a new focus on streaming.

Completing the lineup are three relatively unknown poker players: Lasse Jagd Lauristen, Keith Becker, and Mark Foresta. The latter two are interesting signings as they’re both Twitch streamers from Pennsylvania.

Ambassadors to target recreational players

Becker and Foresta have just one live result each, according to The Hendon Mob’s database.

The former finished ninth in a $100 event at Parx Casino in 2015 for $396. The latter picked up $1,259 for a third-place finish in the $75 Sunday Bounty at Parx Casino in 2019.

Both players also have some cashes online but, as yet, have no major titles to speak of.

PokerStars may not have drafted the two for their poker resumes, however, as their social media presence will likely be of use to the poker company.

Both players live in Pennsylvania and, therefore, have the ability to stream content from PokerStars PA.

PokerStars has been the only online poker site in the state since November 2019. However, that’s about to change, as has announced it’s going live in Pennsylvania later this year. GGPoker also looks to be joining the fray after receiving a local gaming license in February.

With the winds of change set to blow, PokerStars will use its two Pennsylvanian ambassadors to generate interest among recreational players. Becker, for one, is a social media personality who can engage this demographic, according to PokerStars.

“Keith will be streaming on PokerStars PA and his aims are to break down the walls for those new to poker and bring more people to the game,” reads PokerStars’ recent press release.

Foresta will assume a similar role and help make poker entertaining, particularly for those living in Pennsylvania. “Foresta will be making poker more enjoyable for everyone … inspiring others to enjoy the game,” the press release continues.

Signings will raise PokerStars’ social media game

Beyond its efforts to attract newbies in Pennsylvania, PokerStars wants to raise its profile elsewhere in the world with the help of Grafton, Talbot, and Coimbra. All three have become familiar faces on the circuit over the last decade.

Grafton came up through London’s live scene during the early days of the poker boom. His breakthrough moment finally came in 2019 when he won the Super High Roller at EPT Barcelona for €1.3 million/$1.52 million.

Talbot has been grinding online for the past seven years. He currently has more than $3 million in online earnings, $750,000+ in live cashes, and was previously a coach at Upswing Poker.

The other interesting takeaway from PokerStars’ latest announcement is the return of Coimbra. The Portuguese pro left the company in 2017 after announcing his retirement from the game.

The split was amicable and that’s reopened the door to a second stint with PokerStars. This time around, Coimbra wants to focus more on the game’s lighter side.

“Andre returns to the team and is coming back with goals of growing his Twitch and social media communities,” says PokerStars’ April 6 press release.

The message coming from PokerStars HQ is that the six signings will enhance its social media presence and engage newbies. This strategy has proved successful over the last three years as — despite challenges from the likes of GGPoker — Stars remains the biggest brand in the business.

Written by
Daniel Smyth
Dan Smyth is a poker media journeyman who politely reminds CardsChat readers that poker is played all around the world, not just America.

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