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Laurent Tapie, the man behind the possible takeover of Full Tilt Poker, is looking to continue with the International Stadiums Poker Tour (ISPT) after the first event is held in September at London’s Wembley Stadium.

“Wembley Stadium is already booked, and we just need to get our licence before getting a date for it – if we can do things quickly we can launch in September this year, alternatively we can hold the first event in April 2013. We’ll decide by the end of February,” Tapie explained.

Tapie also mentioned that the next venue may be Monaco’s Stade Louis II. All venues will be stadiums with the potential to hold tournaments with 30,000 players. The field will begin with electronic pads on the backs of stadium seats with the final 10% continuing on physical tables.

Laurent Tapie also indicated that if the acquisition of Full Tilt Poker is successful, it would likely be the beleaguered poker site’s software that is used for the events. The ISPT is the brainchild of partners Laurent Tapie, Prosper Masquelier (former Partouche Interactive colleague) and Tapies’ father, Bernard.

Groupe Bernard Tapie has also applied for licensing in the newly-regulated market in Spain. They will find out whether they are successful in late March or early April.

Earlier this month, PokerUpdate published an article highlighting players that still owe Full Tilt money. This is an obstacle that needs to be addressed, according to GBT attorney Behn Dayanim, before the acquisition can be completed.

However, today’s ISPT announcement could prove to be good news for players with balances still locked up on Full Tilt. A poker tournament that is looking to field 30,000 players live will likely have one operator exclusively producing satellites for recreational players to enter the tournament. Since Tapie is further expanding the tour before the first event has even begun, it could mean that the acquisition of Full Tilt is nearing completion.

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Perry Garland

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