December 30, 2009

On certain iPoker clients shutting down winning players

A big talking point among poker players lately have been the exclusion of winning players on certain iPoker networks like VCPoker. The biggest reason that they’ve been excluded has been because they’re winning players. Obviously this sounds like a load of shit to anyone who plays poker seriously, because why would you exclude winning players? They contribute to the rake just as much as the losing players, and some winning players contribute even more because they play for a living and therefore put in a much higher volume. However, most people fail to realize how these businesses are being run and they don’t realize that everything is all related.

To put things in perspective a little bit, here’s the scenario. The iPoker network is run by a company called Playtech. Playtech gives license to a lot of different skins who operate independantly of eachother, but on the same network so they share the same group of players. Someone who plays on Hansa Poker can play against someone who plays on Betfred Poker or VCPoker. I’m not sure exactly how the deals are between the skins and Playtech, but I think the skins get a piece of the rake they make, or a piece of the interest that Playtech make from keeping money in the bank. The skins probably make money from having a piece of the rake of their own players. That would make most sense anyways. It could be different, but the effect is the same anyways.

So here’s the deal. We all know online poker networks and sites make their money from interest. Money in the bank generates interest, and this interest generates profit. So obviously, the sites who make the most money are the sites that have the most money in the bank. Here’s where VC and whatever other skins that are kicking winning players off, are stepping into problems, but I’ll get into that a little later.

There’s a recession going on. Everything is intertwined. Playtech aren’t making as much money now, because people are more conservative with their money. John Smith from Sheffield can’t afford to gamble with his spare £500 every month anymore. jsmithswfc won’t be seen at the tables as often as he would’ve liked to. He has had to withdraw money from his poker account. This goes on all over Europe. John, and people similar to him, have a little bit of a tighter economy because of the recession. The banks are feeling the biggest squeeze, and to release some tension, they’ll squeeze their clients a little bit. Their clients will squeeze their clients and so it goes until there’s nothing left to squeeze. Everyone loses when economy is tight.

So why VC are getting into all this predicament and banning accounts from cash games? A lot of the players who get rakeback are winning players. Winning players who get 60 % rakeback and make a substantial amount off of the rakeback generally make a pretty solid living doing it. These people who make a living off of poker will generally withdraw money. When people withdraw money it means less money in the bank for Playtech and VC. So in order to start making profits again, VC will cut their biggest expense, the people who withdraw money from their banks. These are sadly the winning players.

Sucks to be a winning player, but this definitely wouldn’t happen if there wasn’t a recession. As a player you just got to deal with it. We’re part of the global economy too.

Posted By ohjoy at 11:18 PM



simpleme posted on December 31, 2009 at 00:13 AM


When I read your post I get the feeling that VC made this decision to make more money while they were actually forced by playtech ..

ohjoy posted on December 31, 2009 at 00:41 AM


you don't see the correlation between the two?

playtech are not in as good a financial state as they were when these loyalty bonuses were first offered. in order for vc to be as profitable to playtech as the other sites (and thus keep their license with playtech) they obviously had to cut it.

winning players being shut down is just a coincidence because they have the most money.

Boomer posted on December 31, 2009 at 12:45 PM


To be honest all you need to do is look at the Microgaming network to see what happens when either dodgy accounting or a recession hits sites which try and stretch the rakeback bubble as far as possible, essentially competing with themselves. Those who went too far went under and I suppose this is Playtech's way of trying to stop it. Sucks for the players but my guess is it's in the T&C that the site may ban you for any reason they choose, just as a live casino can bar you if they choose.

simpleme posted on December 31, 2009 at 12:55 PM


Yes I see the correlation between the two but I just wanted to state that the problem lies with playtech who allow certain types of loyalty schemes only to react to them when things are going bad..

ohjoy posted on December 31, 2009 at 18:41 PM


Of course the problem lies with Playtech, but we have to understand and accept that this is the case, and not go apeshit because we lost our rakeback. I mean, people have been living off of rakeback. We're basically spoiled shit kids for whining about it. Sure, it sucks, but what can we do? We just have to move on.

simpleme posted on January 01, 2010 at 18:13 PM


True story :)

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