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Poker Icons interviewed by Bluff Magazine

Hello Per!  Per we all know you as a big time agent for poker players, tell us about Poker Icons for people who don’t know about you.

Hi Ryan! I don’t know about being a “big time agent,” but our agency PokerIcons started up approximately two years ago.  The purpose of PokerIcons is to sign up & coming online players that we believe will make it on the live scene as well. Our first signing was Annette Obrestad with Betfair, and I think it’s safe to say that she has certainly earned it. We also have some strictly live players, but our focus is online.

So basically you sign up players and help them get sponsorships through poker sites.

Yes, we sign the talents and together we set goals and put together a branding package for the player. We are very careful about who we sign, since we know it’s not easy to get a sponsor for them. There are so many things that must match.  We also do a lot of post-contract work for the talents, making sure everything runs smoothly with their sponsor and vice versa.

Give us some details on the post contract work please.

Blogging is an example. For some players this is new, but every sponsor wants their players to blog, so sometimes we have to give the player a little gentle push to get started.  We also get offers for sponsored players from non-poker related sponsors, and then we have to negotiate with the poker site to see if we can make that happen.  We also monitor that nobody else can use the sponsor or the player in their marketing.

How many clients do you have right now?

At the moment we have 24 players.  Like I said, we are very careful about whom we sign, and we do turn down players that want us to represent them on a weekly basis.  It’s not because we want to, but there is no point in us taking on a player if we know he will not get a sponsor.  PokerIcons most recent signings were William Thorson who joined team PokerStars, and John Tabatabai joined team Betfair.

Basically you look for quality and not quantity.  Do you play a lot of poker?

Yes, you are correct. 

Do you play a lot of poker?

Not really, there is never time.  I play maybe 20 SNG’s a week.

When you are not working, what do you do in your free time?

I’m sorry, I don’t understand the question. What is this “free time” you talk about? LOL.  To be serious, I am married and have an 8 year old daughter.  There is not much free time around here. We are based in Oslo, Norway, so we work over many time zones, which kills all possibility of ever taking a day off.

I have two off the topic questions for you, first, what is your favorite sport?

Soccer is my favorite; I’m a huge Man Utd fan!

I’m assuming you liked the outcome of the Man Utd and Chelsea game

Phew! That game (and the one against Barcelona) was brutal!

If you were stranded on a desert island, but were allowed to have one hottie with you, who would it be?

Well, at some point I would want to get back to the wifey, so I’m going to pick Dolly Parton strictly for her floating devices.

You’re the first person to mention the wife, well played sir.  Per it was good speaking with you, and we wish you the best of luck in the future with Poker Icons.

Cheers Ryan, and keep up the great work! Really enjoy reading your stuff.

31/01/2009
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