In the spring of 2012, the Concord Group made a point in the poker scene with an innovation that has since found many copycats. The huge sum of € 1,000,000 was guaranteed for the first time in a live tournament in Europe. The event was so successful that the second edition of the Concord Million already took place in the autumn of the same year.
From the idea to the mega-event
In a joint brainstorming, the then manager of the CCC Innsbruck Thomas Herman had the idea of organising a tournament with a guaranteed prize pool of one million Euro. Peter Zanoni was impressed and picked up the idea immediately. Tournament director Jonathan Luetkenhorst and his team formed a new format and implemented it in the spring of 2012 for the first time all over Austria. The first Concord Million was born.
Around 2,000 players from all over Europe joined in the battle for the prize pool at the beginning, and over the years it would become even more. Ercin Corc made the poker history books as the first winner of a Concord Million. The event was immediately able to establish itself as a fixed star in European poker heaven.
The Vienna specialist could not be bent
After Salzburg resident Bosniak Sinisa Teodorovic, who won the Concord Million II, the time came for Konstantinos Nanos. He had already been successful with his third place at the European Poker Tour 2010 in Vienna and celebrated his first big success. Many more were about to follow, including a win at the WPT Vienna.
Innovation requires evolution
But the organisers did not rest on their successes and constantly developed the tournament format further. The limit of 2,000 tickets was already lifted with the third Concord Million, re-entries and live streaming have been introduced, the payout structure has been improved and last-chance tournaments have been brought into the extensive programme.
Over the years, the starting chips as well as the live satellites have become more, the duration of the levels have become longer. Multiple qualifications offered poker fans the chance to win a bonus of € 4,000 for each additional final qualification. Turbo starting days, starting days with half and double buy-in, as well as starting days with shortened level times complemented the extensive offer for every taste.
Day 2 also soon took place in the participating branches in Austria. With the introduction of phase 1 tournaments, the opportunity existed to play for the total prize money of € 1,000,000 for a buy-in of € 60.
Numerous partner casinos all over Europe wanted to take part and thus provided an even more colourful participant field. Over the years, online partners joined and thereby offered the players the opportunity to qualify online for the Concord Million.
The prize pool continued to grow
In the fourth edition, the Concord Million touched the prize money limit of 1.1 million Euro for the first time. In the end, David Packer was ahead and prevailed against a field of players from 26 different countries. His successor was called Miklos Koszta. The Hungarian nabbed the Concord Million V in 2015. As so often before, the guaranteed sum was also clearly exceeded this year.
Poker celebrities en masse
In the previous eight Concord Millions, numerous well-known personalities and poker professionals have beaten the path to the doorstep. Among them was also Jan Heitmann, the personal coach of TV star Stefan Raab and mastermind behind Raab's poker TV hit.
Poker pros like Erich Kollmann, Stefan Jedlicka, Sebastian Langrock, Gerald Karlic, Andreas Freund and Ana Marquez included the Concord Million in their personal annual tournament calendar as a matter of course and arrived.
A new record
In 2016, David Urban took the sought-after winner’s trophy, followed by Ognjen Jakara. In 2017, the Concord Million grew into a record million. Never before has there been such a large amount in the prize pool, € 1,191,550 in total waited for the lucky winners.
Also in the previous year, the event impressed with a prize pool that was clearly exceeded. After the registration was over, tournament director Jonathan Luetkenhorst could proudly announce a total of 1,169,300. Thus, the mega event proved again that it is keeping pace with the times and has become indispensable for many players.
Raphael Hager won the Concord Million VIII, he is the current champion and defending champion. From 28 November to 9 December, it's all about who will be his successor.
The Live satellites and phase 1 tournaments of the Concord Million 2019 have already started. Furthermore, poker fans can also qualify at the online partner of the Concord Group Betkings online and start.