Anant Purohit

The gaming industry is on the constant rise not only in India but also globally, and in that, real money gaming (RMG) is not an exception. Although in its nascent stage, the RMG sector has seen a phenomenon growth since the Covid-19 pandemic. In the RMG sector, Poker is one game that has garnered attention from people across the world. As of today, Poker as a whole has become a highly competitive market for players as well as for platforms offering services.

In an exclusive interaction with Animation Xpress, Poker Pro Anant Purohit delved into the sustainability of an online gaming platform. Purohit, who is responsible for building a Poker community for the fantasy gaming platform PlayerzPot, also discussed factors that ensure the growth of a Poker player.

Purohit started off by sharing how he considered Poker as a recreational activity and played it as a hobby during his graduation. It was only in 2016-17, that he decided to take it up as a career option. “But I obviously didn’t have the courage to do something out of the box and take it up as a career,” he shared. “At that time I didn’t have much resources to become a professional poker player unlike now. I started in 2017 but I failed at becoming a successful Poker player and went back to my work. Then just before the pandemic, I started playing it again and during lockdown, I thought that I could play it professionally.”

Talking about his interest towards Poker, he said, “Poker is hard to master. But the complexities and the game’s nature of having variable results attracted me.” Becoming a pro was not an easy road. “Earlier I was playing everyday but when I thought of playing professionally, I started to study its aspects like bankroll management among other things. I tried to make the best use of the resources available at my disposal to refine my game. My results started improving and I started making more money than my daily job.”

Poker is gradually being taken up as a professional game by many interested people. The game is seeing multiple national and international tournaments with prizes ranging in crores. Talking about the Poker boom in India, Purohit said, “Poker has grown exponentially in India from 2017 onwards. At that time, there was good traffic on foreign websites but not much on the Indian websites/platforms. After the Covid pandemic, the sector has grown. I observed the price guarantees going up as much as 3x compared to the time before the pandemic.”

With the steady growth of the game in India, the players and the stakeholders of Poker feel the need to build a strong community. The fantasy gaming platform PlayerzPot intends to do that with Purohit’s help. Explaining his role at PlayerzPot, he said, “We are conducting sessions with our target audience to create more awareness about Poker and teach them various aspects of the game. We at PlayerzPot are also creating Facebook and WhatsApp groups to solve players’ issues, and using digital marketing tools to properly market ourselves.”

Currently, they are targeting only Poker players but in the future, they intend to reach out to non-Poker players as well. Purohit is of the opinion that the Poker platforms are facing challenges in marketing themselves in India itself. Apart from that, he feels that the tax imposed by the Government of India has put the platforms and players in a difficult position. By imposing tax, the government hasn’t differentiated Poker as a skill-based sector from gambling, he said.

Tax imposed by the government is an external factor for PlayerzPot but building a stronghold of the platform is an internal challenge for the company which can be worked upon. The biggest challenge in the world of Poker and fantasy sports is to attract new customers because the users are not willing to change their platform overnight since they are comfortable with the platform they are using. 

“We are new in the market, we are still trying to make a place for ourselves,” Purohit shared. “But I believe that soon, we will be able to overcome all the challenges.” To sustain itself in the emerging gaming market, one has to constantly innovate. And Purohit believes that PlayerzPot will accomplish that. “We plan to give rewards, different kinds of bonuses and a good experience to a player to sustain in the market as it is becoming highly competitive.”

To the novice Poker players and the ones who are interested in the game, Purohit has only one message – play Poker consciously and be aware of your surroundings on and off the Poker table.