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Buffalo Shuffle

Discussion in 'Casinomeister's Poker Room' started by jetset, Apr 23, 2007.

    Apr 23, 2007
  1. jetset

    jetset Ueber Meister CAG

    Senior Partner, InfoPowa News Service

    Two time WSOP winner involved in training company

    For experience and talent in the game of poker, a pro player like Johnny Chan is pretty hard to beat, and the cool-as-ice veteran, who has two World Series of Poker main event champion bracelets in his trophy cabinet will soon be using cyberspace to pass on his knowledge to would be dealers.

    The Buffalo News reported this week that the Chinese-born, Las Vegas-bred Chan is teaming up with a casino school in Buffalo to make a score in the global casino business, assuming they can get the idea past state regulators.

    Chans company has licensed the Casino Career Training Center in Buffalo to operate an Internet school for dealers called Johnny Chan University in what they claim is a first in online poker education.

    We spent some time at the Casino Career Training Center office in Buffalo (and) looked at the online content, said Nick Koustas, manager of Chan Poker. We were pretty impressed with their content and ability.

    Buffalo News reports that like the United States, nations across Asia are racing to set up legal land poker rooms, and the boom means tens of thousands of dealers will be hired in coming years, creating a need for training facilities.

    This Internet thing is going to explode, said Steven DePutter, head of the Buffalo casino school. I want to train all of Asia - the Philippines, Vietnam, Taiwan . . . Thats in addition to the fast-growing Chinese gambling zone in Macau, plus the expanding [land] casino industry in the U.S.

    The casino school will put Chans name on its real-world sites in Buffalo and Olean, with plans to open two more offices in Las Vegas and in Macau.

    But it is the online business that holds out the promise of reaching the most students, DePutter said. Chan himself will devote one hour a month to the business.

    DePutter plans a 100-hour online class, with exams given via Web cams in students homes. Tuition costs have not yet been finalised, but DePutter is confident these will be less than the $1 200 tab for the realworld class; maybe by as much as half.

    DePutter's staff are currently working with the state Education Department on how the distance learning technique will be applied to counter the suggestion that distance-learning is not usually suited for hands-on skills like card dealing.

    Its an interesting idea, said Thomas Reimer, head of curriculum for the state Eduction Departments trade school division. But because it involves manual skills and dexterity, I have great reservations. The state agency has hired a former dealer to review the schools proposal. The school is refining the program - such as how Web cams will be used - with the states input before submitting a formal application, Reimer said.

    The crucial aspect is, can the institution really teach the hand-work through the Internet, Reimer said.

    Johnny Chan University was formed as a Delaware limited liability corporation on March 9, Delaware Department of State records show. DePutter said he and Kevin S. Upton, who handles the technology side, own the company.

    Upton, whose background is in video messaging, was developing online gambling technology when the U.S. began cracking down on the industry by outlawing financial transactions with online gambling companies. Now, online training represents an alternative application for his Web video system, he said. He is finishing a studio at an Internet hosting site in Amherst to conduct the schools online operations.

    Once all the instructional videos have been filmed, most teaching will happen in cyberspace, with students and instructors both working in their Web cam-equipped homes, Upton explained.

    Students can send videos to instructors to illustrate a question about technique, he said, and instructors will issue grades based on video exams. Graduates will have a video resume to submit to employers that showcases their abilities.

    In addition to obtaining a state license, the school faces the task of raising money. It will seek about $2.4 million in equity from private investors, DePutter said. In order for us to expand, he said, its going to take a great infusion of capital.

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