Over the last year, it seems as though PokerStars has changed from the bottom up. There was the change forced upon their playing community when the United States Department of Justice mutilated the landscape of online poker. Then, there were a series of personnel changes that seemed to be working its way up the food chain.
And now 2012 kicks off with a change at the very top. Just a year and a half into his tenure as the Chief Executive Officer for the largest online poker room, Gabi Campos is stepping down. As of February 1st, PokerStars will be operating under a new CEO.
PokerStars’ press release was as masterfully innocuous as any breaking news could be — they announced the news, sited “other opportunities” as the reason, thanked Campos and wished him well and announced they were looking for his replacement — but change this big always begs questions, whether they’re warranted or not.
The disruption does not come in a vacuum either. Most obviously, it comes concurrently with the aforementioned indictments from the US DOJ.
But also, it comes just after a tumultuous year on their live tournament front. Two of Euro Poker Tour’s biggest components have left over the last several months. Tournament Director Thomas Kremser informed PokerStars of his resignation via the press. Just a few months later EPT’s CEO and original developer, John Duthie, announced that he was not going to renew with PokerStars.
These developments, though, had a much longer trickle-down for their effects to reach the everyday player. Most PokerStars players will never play on the Euro Poker Tour, so those adjustments seemed so much more distant.
With the man in charge of running the whole business in flux, though, the playing community at large has a stake in it. Now, we await the appointment of the new boss to see what more changes may come.