Rising like the mythological Phoenix from the virtual ashes of the Internet, PokerShare announced its return to the online poker world on April 25th.
The last year has been, as the Grateful Dead put it so very well, a "long, strange trip" for the burgeoning poker enterprise. When it was introduced after last year's World Series, PokerShare came out with an entirely new approach for its players. Through a innovative profit sharing program, the players would actually benefit from the success of the online venture. Through playing at the site, online poker players would earn a percentage of any profits from PokerShare and, with the power of the Excapsa Poker Network behind it, the future indeed looked bright for the "new kid" on the poker block.
The wheels quickly fell off soon after PokerShare started, however. After analyzing the rapidly growing site, the Excapsa Network saw that PokerShare was pulling players away from many other sites on the Web but also was pulling from the star of the Excapsa Network, UltimateBet. This led in November 2005 to Excapsa excluding players from the United States and, as the month went on, the eventual withdrawal of their software from the operation of PokerShare.
The story only got more interesting as 2006 began. PokerShare decided to sue in the English courts over their breakup with Excapsa, accusing the network of violating the agreement they had. Negotiations in February averted legal action as the two companies settled their disagreement amicably and PokerShare went about the task of restarting the online site with the same plans in place for online poker success.
After teaming up with the Tain Network, PokerShare re-launched their site to their existing members with beta testing of the new site throughout the month of March. That testing is now complete and, with the return of the site to action, seem to have much more in store for their returning members and any new players that come to the site.
Remaining intact is the profit sharing program that enabled PokerShare to receive the "Top New Site" award from Gambling Online Magazine Awards, but new affiliate programs have also been established that either earn money in a one time lump sum or through the continued play of affiliate members. PokerShare also has drawn from the ranks of PartyGaming for their Director of Marketing, Satyaswaroop Mahapatra. Mahapatra believes it is only a matter of time before PokerShare asserts itself on the online poker world.
"PokerShare has a concept that can stand on its own; this will make it easier for the affiliates to promote PokerShare," he stated as the company rejoins the online poker wars. He continued, "Sharing in the company's success is a unique selling point that differentiates PokerShare.com from all other online poker rooms in the industry. The initial response from affiliates has been remarkable and at this rate I'd expect to see PokerShare.com amongst the major poker rooms in the industry very soon."
Poker players have a great memory, so it remains to be seen if PokerShare can achieve their previous success and reach beyond it.
Ed Note: Do you own a Mac? You can play online anytime you want at Pokerroom.com