In a financial world dominated by investments, stocks, shares, and astute capitalization, few business men venture along the recreational sector to earn their living.
There is an ever increasing trend developing, however, of expert bluffers earning eye watering amounts of money, from a game which predominantly revolves around chance. Poker.
Increased publicity, tournaments and most importantly, media coverage, has seen the Poker world receive a huge financial boost, with the thought of becoming a professional Poker player now a genuine career option for any new player to the game.
Any doubters of this notion should check the financial assets of the game’s best players. The highest earning player in the world, Daniel Negreanu, has $30,686,160 to his name from prize money alone, whilst the trailing field behind him have each won just shy of $30 million. Interestingly, 60% of the games highest earners come from the USA, showing just how big this recreational activity is becoming in the states.
A theory behind this is the ‘Dan Blizerian’ effect. The American, who has a net worth of over $100 million has used his success in the game to create a huge social media presence, exhibiting his luxurious lifestyle upon his many followers. The foundation for Blizerian’s fortunes came from astonishing success in Poker, with the media keen to give the controversial star publicity.
Seen as an inspirational role model, American’s and people from all around the world have tried to follow in Dan’s footsteps. As a result of this, tournament prize money is at an all time high, with the famous World Series of Poker tournament leading the way in this category.
Peaking at over $82 million the tournaments biggest payout was to Jamie Gold in 2006, who was the recipient of $12 million for claiming the title. Such huge jackpot are similar to the online pokies machines at Pokies Palace.com.au, where the current Mega Moolah jackpot has exceeded an incredible $14 million. Whichever lucky pokies player scoops this prize, it will certainly turn their life upside down. The previous biggest jackpot win from a pokies game at an online casino was back in 2013, when a Finnish player scooped almost $23 million on the pokies game ‘Mega Fortune’.
Just like in total tournament prize money won, the American’s have dominated at the World Series of Poker, winning the jackpot fund in nine of the last 15 tournaments.
Whichever way you look at it Poker is now big business. The once thought of low stakes game, has transformed through its popularity in the States, and can now boast to be the undisputedly the world’s most lucrative recreational game. This has seen a number of online poker operators list on the stock exchange, with companies like 888 Holding, Bwin Party, and Betfair all listed on the UK stock exchange and enjoying mainstream investments from everyday investors looking to diversify their portfolio.
Sources: nytimes.com / guinnessworldrecords.com / wikipedia.org