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At noon today, India’s poker superstar Aditya Agarwal (cover image) aka ‘Intervention’ tweeted about the end of his five-year long collaboration with online poker giant PokerStars India.
It’s been an amazing five years but now it’s time for PokerStars India and me to part ways. I am grateful for an amazing journey with them, want to say thanks to the team and my fellow pros for all the wonderful memories, I will miss you all! I wish them all the best
— Aditya Agarwal (@AdiAgarwal_int) December 28, 2019
The Kolkata-born poker pro was signed on by the world’s most popular and prestigious online site in January 2015 making Agarwal the first Indian to become a PokerStars brand ambassador.
In fact, he was recruited by PokerStars even before the company had launched its operations in India. One of the longest-serving team pros, Agarwal, will no longer be representing the Red Spade going forward.
Announcing his departure on Twitter, the poker stalwart wrote about his time with the brand, his gratitude towards his fellow team ambassadors and reminisced the cherished memories of his time as a PokerStars India Team pro.
We reached out to Agarwal who articulated his views on the departure in a line. Agarwal said, “I am really looking forward to getting on the grind and playing across all sites.”
PokerStars Mass Exodus Continues in the Face of New Marketing Strategy
With Agarwal’s exit from Team Red Spade, he has now joined a long list of pros who have recently parted ways with the brand. Starting with Twitch streaming poker professionals Jeff Gross and Jaime Staples in February, the brand has bid adieu to Kevin Martin, Jake Cody, Randy Lew, six-time WSOP bracelet winner Daniel Negreanu, as well as poker power couple Liv Boeree and Igor Kurganov.
Known for their constantly evolving marketing strategies, PokerStars latest trend of signing on lesser known poker streamers like Kalidou Sow, Arlie Shaban, James Mackenzie, Nick Walsh, and Eva Reberc, along with eight new streamers, Mason ‘pyefacepoker’ Pye, Georgina ‘GJreggie’ James, Tom ‘Pleb_method’ Hayward, Alberto ‘Catof_Poker’ Perez, Guillermo Inclan, Steve Enriquez, Benjamin Bruneteaux and Julien Brecard, suggest that the company is focussing on up-and-coming streamers to reach out to wider audiences. It is evident that their strategy is to divest sponsorship dollars from top pros towards more mainstream celebrities and mass campaigns.
Mirroring the brand’s global marketing strategy, PokerStars India has made many major investments recently which include sponsoring Season 1 of Global Poker League (GPL) India which was broadcasted on Colors Infinity, roping in acclaimed Bollywood actor Nawazuddin Siddique as their brand ambassador, as well as, tying-up with reality TV show Big Boss, for its 13th season, as one of the associate sponsors along with substantial investments in primetime TVC’s and OTT ads.