Las Vegas, NV (May 18, 2010) – It’s the dream of all poker player’s. Whether you have eleven like current record-holder Phil Hellmuth or are seeking your first, poker players dream of winning a World Series of Poker (WSOP) gold bracelet and cementing their names in the history books.
To commemorate the 40th anniversary of the WSOP (1970-2010), a new bracelet will be awarded to each winner of the 57 official tournaments – and for the first time in history -- no two will be alike.
On Tilt Designs Pty. Ltd., is the official corporate name of the company who has entered into a multi-year agreement to launch a lifestyle collection inspired by the World Series of Poker. On Tilt will have branded apparel, headwear and accessories to cover the poker player from “head to wrist.” The centerpiece of marketing the collection is a sponsorship of WSOP bracelets for the Las Vegas and European events, for which On Tilt selected famed jewelry designer Steve Soffa.
Soffa, a Master Artisan and renowned designer, career has spanned 16 years and includes work for Fortune 100 companies including Microsoft, Sony, Oracle and Universal Pictures.
“It’s a tremendous honor to be tasked with creating the foremost trophy for poker players worldwide,” said Soffa. “We have been hard at work putting the finishing touches on the WSOP gold bracelets and we look forward to unveiling them to the world on May 28 at the Rio.”
Soffa’s poker-themed original artwork will be featured on watches, rings, pendants and other custom accessories, creating a limited-edition line called On Tilt: Steve Soffa.
Shane McDowall, CEO of On Tilt Designs, and a fixture on the Australian poker scene for several years, noticed a significant void in appropriate fashion for the poker lifestyle. Visiting the WSOP, he was awed by the prestige of the WSOP bracelet and its status as the ultimate accessory for a poker champion.
Said McDowall, “The WSOP bracelet is one of the precious few things money can’t buy. The On Tilt collection aspires to cover everything else a poker player needs to look like a champion. I’m thrilled to commission a great artist to update the look of the WSOP bracelets and honored to team up with Steve Soffa on this special line of luxury goods for On Tilt.”
McDowall and Soffa agreed customization of the championship bracelets was critical in further elevating the prestige associated with winning poker’s only wearable trophy.
The On Tilt: Steve Soffa team will be on hand at each bracelet ceremony [Pavilion Ballroom, 2:20 PM the day following each event concludes] to hand-engrave the player’s name into the back of the faceplate along with other details from that particular event. In addition, any player wishing for further customization of their new trophy will be able to work with the designers to do so.
A special bracelet is being crafted for the Main Event winner, the $50,000 Poker Player’s Championship and for the first time in history, the Ladies Championship.
“It’s an honor to work with this team and have the WSOP play a role in launching a new lifestyle brand.” said WSOP VP Ty Stewart. “They are passionate about poker, experts in their craft, and we’re confident the masterpiece they are hand-crafting will elevate the prestige of anyone fortunate enough to win one.”
In addition to the personalized bracelets, On Tilt: Steve Soffa is creating unique collector’s boxes to house them. Knowing full well that players display their bracelets as trophies, On Tilt: Steve Soffa will provide each bracelet winner with a commemorative wooden-lacquered display case to accompany their new treasure along with a certificate of authenticity.
On Tilt: Steve Soffa has also taken painstaking measures during the creation and design of the bracelet to ensure they are wearable as well. While the bracelet band can be adjusted, Soffa and his team spent considerable time on the faceplate portion of the design to make sure when it sits on top of the individual’s wrist, it will lie properly and display symmetrically. In addition, a specially-designed custom solid gold clasping mechanism, with an embellished logo and card suits, will provide a seamless comfort fit closure designed to provide a sleek, secure and comfortable procedure to put on and take off the bracelet.
Each bracelet is made with 14K solid gold and will feature a collection of princess and round cut diamonds, while the four card suits will feature rubies and black diamonds. The Main Event bracelet will feature nearly six ounces of gold and 550 individual, hand-set diamonds – weighing nearly four carats in total. The unique characteristics make each bracelet truly priceless in value.
In 2008, Soffa opened up his watch and art store in the Rio Hotel and Casino and decorated the entire poker room with his artwork and timepieces. In 2009, Joe Cada and Soffa created a relationship and before the November final table Joe chose to wear Soffa's award winning timepiece named "Suicide King". Joe won the 2009 WSOP Main Event wearing the limited edition "King" once needing a river King to stay alive.
The Suicide King becomes the official watch of the 2010 WSOP. And, after his performance creating a modern yet classic look for the WSOP bracelets, Soffa is the “Official Designer of the WSOP.”
As an artist and jewelry designer, Soffa’s collections include a wide range of jewelry pieces, from rings to watches to necklaces, as well as artwork and clothing depicting his unique award-winning style. On Tilt plans to sell its collection onsite at the Rio, through its online website at www.ontilt.com and through international retail outlets.
ABOUT ON TILT: STEVE SOFFA
In 2010, On Tilt created a partnership with Steve Soffa and together they are creating a high-end lifestyle brand for the poker industry. Australian-based businessman and entrepreneur Shane McDowall’s On Tilt merchandise is recognized as the “Official World Series of Poker Collection.” On Tilt: Steve Soffa, was formed to manufacture, license and market a lifestyle collection of WSOP-inspired jewelry. Soffa is a former Fortune 100 designer who worked with distributors around the globe to help corporations with their marketing campaigns and brand awareness for their product and services. Soffa has created timepieces for companies such as Oracle, Microsoft, Sony and Universal Pictures. In 1996, Soffa created a program called “Virtual Sample” which enabled the industry to create a custom timepiece online within 24 hours. In 2009, Soffa’s Hardcore Watch line and Artistry in Time line was recognized as the official watch of the biker industry and featured in Hot Bike magazine. In 2008, Soffa captured the JCK Award for best watch design, and later that year Soffa opened up the Hardcore Watch Company (HCW) in the Rio Hotel and Casino. McDowall currently has a large vested interest in the Australian Pub Poker market since seizing the opportunity when Australian Joe Hachem won the 2005 World Series of Poker Main Event. McDowall’s former IT business was a multiple-award winner and ranked in the Top 25 Australian IT distribution companies in 2002. For more on On Tilt, visit www.ontilt.com. For more on Steve Soffa, visit www.stevesoffa.com.
ABOUT THE WSOP
The World Series of Poker (WSOP) is the largest, richest and most prestigious gaming event in the world, having awarded more than a billion dollars in prize money and the prestigious gold bracelet, globally recognized as the sport’s top prize. Featuring a comprehensive slate of tournaments in every major poker variation, the WSOP is poker’s longest running tournament in the world, dating back to 1970. In 2009, the event attracted 60,875 entrants from 115 different countries to the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas and awarded over $174 million in prize money. The WSOP in December, 2008 was named the 7th most admired sports brand in North America by the Turnkey Sports Survey, trailing only the older and more established NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL, NASCAR and PGA Tour among sports properties. In addition, the WSOP has experienced groundbreaking alliances in broadcasting, digital media and corporate sponsorships, while successfully expanding the brand internationally with the advent in 2007 of the World Series of Poker Europe. For more information on the World Series of Poker, please visit our website at www.wsop.com.