Betsafe, a Betsson online gambling brand, recently signed World Series of Poker November Nine participant Felix Stephensen to its sponsored player roster.
Betsafe operates an online poker skin on the Microgaming Poker Network (MPN), serving the international non-US online poker market.
Stephensen, who hails from Norway and is just 24 years of age, will enter WSOP Main Event final table action on November 10 with the second-largest stack of 32,775,000.
The Norwegian’s live poker tournament career received a significant shot in the arm back in July when he received a guaranteed WSOP Main Event ninth place payout of $730,725 in Las Vegas, but the up and coming player will have his sights set on the $10 million first place prize once final table play resumes in less than two months.
Two other live tournament cashes include a deep run in the 2013 €5,300 buy-in EPT Barcelona Main Event along with a 12th place effort in the Norwegian Championships €1,000 No Limit Hold’em tournament back in 2009, according to The Hendon Mob database.
The signing of Stephensen comes roughly at the same time that 888poker hired fellow November Niner Bruno Politano of Brazil as one of its Ambassadors. Politano joined JC Tran, Xuan Liu, Sofia Lovgren and renowned cricket player Shane Warne as official 888 Poker site representatives.
The surge in player signings that occurs around the November Nine is not indicative of industry trends as a whole when it comes to sponsored pros; Sponsorships have become increasing hard to come by since the events surrounding Black Friday paired down online poker site’s spending.
The trend looked like it had reversed when the US market opened back up to online poker in 2013, but recently Ultimate Poker cut its US sponsored Pro roster and PokerStars slashed its roster in Latin American markets, including long time ambassador to the game, Humberto Brenes.