Planet Mark's Blog. Thoughts, News And Strategy For Poker Tournaments Of All Size

Planet Corp Update April 2015

Time for another behind the scenes look into Planet Corp and the team making it all happen with my online projects. It has been a busy first quarter of the year. Then again I really can’t recall the last time when things were not super-busy around here. Relaxing is just not a part of my nature, I’d go as far as to say that I don’t really see the point…

The Gambling Market

Winter is the best time to be in this business. Cold and dark nights mean more opportunities to play. This winter has been good for me, in terms of players sent to the various sites and revenues coming back.

There have been exceptions, Titan Poker in particular seems to be on a downward trend. Balancing this has been a solid performance from the offshore US sites. The sorry condition of in-State poker makes it look like there are no major changes to this setup any time soon – though risks remain of course.

Russia is a big area for me with several sites including www.pokerbonusclub.ru and www.potlimitomaha.ru – this area looked to be a big risk late last year, though things do seem to have stabilized for now. Titan pulling out of Hungary and now Germany has made things more complicated (888 also pulled out of Hungary).

I just read an article on Poker News showing that ring game traffic has declined a few % year-on-year – though the pace of decline is slower. This does not surprise me. With so many multi-tabling ‘human robots’ even at the micros, the appeal of those games is becoming more and more limited for recreational players – who want a bit of entertainment for their money these days.

Staff Changes

I just took on Balasz, who will support Greg with the poker sites. He has a background in poker website projects and is also an experienced SNG Grinder – a solid CV for a position at Planet Corp.

Gambling Site Plans for 2Q

There are no huge changes planned to the poker site network. We will get the World Series of Poker qualifiers section up shortly, and be reviving an old Russian language site which got seriously left behind (www.pokerbonus.kz (please dont laugh!)).  Other than that it is a case of taking the opportunity of having an extra pair of hands here at Planet HQ to give as much of the content as possible a spring clean and generally freshen things up with new ideas.

High Tech Gambling grew considerably in the first quarter. It now has more than 400 pages – and zero banners! This one covers casinos, betting and poker – though the main emphasis is on the casino side. Slots in particular have gone crazy compared to the games of old, and now have interactive bonus games and on-reel features, as well as 3D graphics… not to mention that many of them drop 5, 6 or 7 figures very regularly. These are –ev games, I get that, they can be very entertaining none the less…

I am working on a local business project here in Budapest at the moment, which has forced me to put HTG on the back-burner for a couple more weeks. This is a shame, though the best option. I’m having a short break, then coming back – rather than plodding along with a half-assed effort.

Financial Spread Betting Site

This one got a new look, which is still sitting on our development server waiting for a final brush-up. I feel bad about this, though as I’m already working 14 hours a day and need resource for other projects first, something had to give.

Fitness Review Site

A success story, well it will be in another week or so...

The goal in the first quarter was to fill big gap in the market for straight forward reviews, comparisons and guides to buying fitness equipment.

This has been Planet Greg’s project for the last 3 months. The idea was that he took a budget, and led the whole thing… with me guiding him on the project management and English wording as required.

It is not quite ready to show you, with the final design and development taking place over the next week or so. A big positive with this project is to have a previous Planet Corp collaborator Sam back working with us again. Sam is a writer and entrepreneur from the UK, and is providing the reviews and comparisons for us.

Between Greg, Sam, Tibor (tech), Marton (design) and Reka (uploads) there is a great team involved in this project. Once the initial comparison site is established and widgets are working, there will be opportunities to spread it out in many directions too.

 

Chasing Jack Golf Betting Tips

This golf based blog had a change in direction. It was a mix of satire and tournament previews before, and now will focus on picks too. This is a collaboration with Nick from the UK, who is a specialist in this area, as well as an accomplished writer.

The challenge involves turning £300 into £3000 by March 2016, under the title ‘Race to the Masters’. This is the minimum that it would cost to take a break to fly out to watch the Masters from the UK. Things got off to a flying start with a 16/1 winner and a 20/1 winner the very next week. You can follow along, and read Nick’s previews over at www.chasingjack.com

Local Organization

I’m keeping this topic largely separate from my online ventures. It gets a special mention for taking up most of my time, and for being an exciting concept.

There are a lot of international residents in Hungary, I estimate more than 300,000. There are some amazing things going on here, businesses, arts, events and more. What Budapest lacks is an organization to bring the different nationalities, demographics and business interests together…  I should say ‘lacked’, since I have taken the lead (as an investor and manager) in setting up exactly this organization.

It’s going live any day now – with the first event mid-month and a sales / marketing / events team in place and raring to go.

This is a big change up for me personally. It will get me away from the online world, and force me to get out and interact with a lot of different people.

Other Plans Q2 2015

I have so many ideas; so much motivation and some money to invest… only my current projects already keep me busy 7 full-on days a week.

This quarter will be about consolidating, getting the right resources in place and getting the current projects stable and many of them profitable. I hope to be able to kick off 1 or maybe 2 smaller projects along the way – though if not, then that would be no great loss.

GL at the tables, Mark

 

 

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