Unibet Poker has announced its return to the Irish online poker market after leaving its shores back in 2015.
The company already has a strong presence in the country with its sponsorship of The Chip Race podcast and co-hosts Dara O’Kearney and David Lappin have also been signed up as ambassadors to promote the platform.
“It was only when Unibet came to us towards the end of 2016 was there potential life back into the podcast,” said Lappin to PokerNews last year. “Unibet Head of Poker David Pomroy was very interested in working with us and The Chip Race was very much part of his thinking when signing us. The show obviously became not an Irish oriented show. We still have Irish guests on but it is much more of an international show looking to have a much broader appeal these days.”
“The response was incredible in Ireland and also the UK,” O’Kearney went on to say about the early shows. “We initially expected zero audience outside of Ireland…but, we did find out that the UK poker community was very receptive to hearing about the Irish poker scene.”
O’Kearney sits as number 1 in total live tournament cashes in Ireland and Lappin sits at number 5.
To welcome back Irish players to their platform, Unibet will be offering Irish poker players a generous welcome offer that will include a €500 playthrough bonus, an €8 NL4 cash game ticket and three €4 Unibet Open qualifier tickets.
Unibet will also be sponsoring the 2018 Irish Live Poker Rankings where €10,000 worth of prizes will be given out over the course of the year.
Furthermore, players that previously frequented the Stan James poker network are now being invited to log in on the Unibet website where new accounts had been created for them.
The operator announced the plan to close the Stan James brand last year to focus UK market activity on their flagship brand instead.
Unibet Online Series
The launch back into the Irish market this week coincides with the advent of the Unibet Online Series (UOS). The UOS is the first online tournament series from Unibet since it moved off MPN and launched its own independent online poker platform in 2014.
Running over a two-week period, the first edition of the UOS will guarantee €300,000 over a total of 84 tournaments, split over 28 events, each with three separate buy-in tiers: Nano-stakes, with buy-ins under a dollar, low-stakes, with buy-ins up to $5, and high stakes in the $25 to $50 range. Six tournaments will run every day starting in the 7pm and 8.30pm slots.
The schedule covers the full spectrum of Unibet’s offer of poker variants, with PLO and a mix of rebuy, bounty, progressive bounty and ante tournaments sitting alongside the regular freezeout Hold’em events. The series culminates in a trio of Main Events which will each run across two days, with top billing going to the €100 buy-in, €100,000 guaranteed Main Event—quite possibly the largest guaranteed tournament the site has ever scheduled.
To promote the series, there will be a leaderboard for each of the three buy-in tiers, plus an overall leaderboard based on performance across all 84 events. In total, €25,000 is earmarked in leaderboard prizes.
The UOS is running now and concludes on March 11.