Ladbrokes has officially announced that its transition from Microgaming’s MPN network to Playtech’s iPoker Network will take place on December 21, promising that the move will bring with it a number of advantages for its loyal players.
Along with improved software that provides “a more user-friendly interface” that enhances multi-tabling for grinders, comes increased liquidity from joining the world’s top-ranked online poker network. Players can expect a wider choice of cash and tournament tables, promotions that are bigger and better, larger prizepools for leaderboard enthusiasts, improved release of bonuses, and a newly-structured VIP loyalty program that provides better rewards at all levels of play.
Existing Ladbrokes players will be informed via email prior to Dec. 21 of the steps required in downloading the new poker software. The new software must be downloaded, as Ladbrokes will no longer be part of Microgaming’s poker network. However, the UK-based bookmaker’s online casino games will continue with Microgaming until the early part of 2014.
Account balances and poker loyalty points will remain intact following the move to the improved online poker environment found at iPoker. As a gesture of appreciation to loyal Ladbrokes players, the highest VIP level achieved during the last 12 months will be granted to all players for the first month following the transition.
Any active bonuses will also be moved to Ladbrokes accounts at iPoker. Unused tokens or tournament tickets will not make the move and will instead be converted into cash and credited to the new accounts.
The current rakeback scheme will not be in effect under the new software. But a new Ladbrokes VIP Shop allows for flexibility in converting points to cash or tournament tickets at the discretion of each player. More precise information regarding the new VIP player loyalty program shall be forthcoming before the Dec. 21 transition date.
Players will be required to choose a new screen name. The same nickname can be used only if it is not already in use by another iPoker player. However, current Ladbrokes usernames and passwords required to log in will remain in effect.
The iPoker Network currently holds down second place in cash game player traffic worldwide in rankings provided by PokerScout. The addition of Ladbrokes will mean increased action at the tables and solidify iPoker as the world’s leading online poker network.
MPN, meanwhile, has cracked the top ten in the global market and has been seen as bucking the trend in online poker as of late. That trend finds player numbers declining in the industry overall at a rate of 15% less than this time last year. The loss of Ladbrokes may cause the network to relinquish its top ten status.
To further put a strain on MPN’s recent progress, the exit of Ladbrokes will be followed by a departure from Unibet that will occur in Q1 of 2014. Unibet has teamed with Relax Gaming and will strike out on its own with a poker site that plans to direct its marketing strategy toward casual players.