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September 11, 2008 - Image 38

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2008-09-11

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

Game For Cash from page A37

TER.

A QUARTER MILLION,
THAT IS.

Scratch off for your chance to win $250,000

No matter what you dream of, playing the
Unlock Your Dreams Sweepstakes can help
make it real. Every Game Piece has a cash
prize or other great offers. Plus, you'll get a
code to enter online for your chance to win
the $250,000 grand prize. You can play as
often as you like,* so come into any Fifth Third
Banking Center again and again.

Get your Game Piece at any Fifth Third Bank location.

FIFTH THIRD BANK

The things we do for dreams:"

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. A PURCHASE WILL NOT INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING. VOID OUTSIDE OF PA, NC, WV, OH, GA, FL, TN, KY,
IL, MI, MO & IN AND WHERE PROHIBITED. PROMOTION IS OPEN ONLY TO LEGAL RESIDENTS OF PA, NC, WV, OH, GA, FL, TN, KY, IL, MI, MO & IN
WHO ARE 18 YEARS OF AGE OR OLDER. While supplies last. Game Pieces may also be requested by mail while supplies last. See Official
Rules for details. For Official Rules, alternate method of entry, prize descriptions and odds disclosure, visit www.53unlockyourdreams.
corn. Promotion ends 11/24/2008. *Up to 20 online entries allowed per person. Sponsor: Fifth Third Bank, 38 Fountain Square, Cincinnati,
OH 45263. Fifth Third Bank, Member FDIC. Q Equal Housing Lender.

1395660

A38

September 11 . 2008

office in Southfield, the same place
where Beyond Gaming was founded
— but with a few stops in between.
They moved to a Telegraph Road
building, then left when the owner
raised the rent.
"We were doing okay, but we were
burning cash fast so we moved the
entire operation to 600 feet of space in
the basement of my home said Rubin.
"My wife really loved that. About 15
cars were parked around the house
and employees were coming and going
all the time.
"But it worked out pretty well. We
stopped the cash bleeding, and being
in close quarters like that actually
drew everyone closer together. Then
we got an anonymous letter from
a neighbor threatening to have us
closed up. So we moved back to this
Southfield location last December,
and it marked the real beginning of
GamerSaloon.com."

How It Works
Here's how it works: Gamers register
free on GamerSaloon.com and set
up an account, usually by credit card.
They can first learn information about
what games to play — mainly sports,
but also racing, shooting, etc.; get
profiles on prospective opponents on
how well they've done in their past
five games; e-mail each other ahead of
time; agree on the game and date and
time for the match, then play, usually
on Play Station 2 and 3, X-Box 360,
Wii and PC.
Beyond Gaming charges a 12 per-
cent service fee for each game. If the
wager is $25, it will cost each player
$28 to enter. The winner then gets
$50. Both players must verify the
results before money is credited to
the winner's account. Because cash
prizes are involved, this type of corn-
petition is considered illegal in nine
states.
"We rarely run into disputes or
claims of cheating, but if we do, the
disputes are investigated by our
customer service manager, Franklin
Crandall [of Berkley], and are settled
quickly:' said Rubin. "And Noah
keeps his eyes glued to the screen
pretty much all day to monitor the
gaming!'
The firm also conducts multi-
player tournaments from time to
time, such as one coming up on the
newly released Madden NFL 09 game
where the winner will get $5,000, with
$5,000 more distributed to the other
63 players. As a sideline business, the
company has set up Beyond Gaming

Entertainment, providing gaming
competition and videos for bar and
bat mitzvahs.
"We've done three such events,
and we're developing a Web site and
contacting party planners to line up
more entertainment for parties," added
Rubin.
Because Beyond Gaming is a pri-
vately held company, he declined to
discuss earnings or profit figures.
The firm has 25 employees working
two shifts daily, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and
4-11 p.m.
Two other Jewish employees are
Justin Becker of Birmingham, head-
ing research and development, and
Aaron Berman of West Palm Beach,
Fla., in charge of Internet market-
ing.
"Our biggest challenge is trying to
spread the word about our operation
so we can keep growing:' said Rubin.
"There is really an untapped market
out there among the millions of gam-
ers. Most of our employees are mar-
keters who visit game stores to talk to
owners and customers, use a network
of bloggers and keep pounding the
Internet.
"We also are trying to work out
partnership arrangements with gam-
ing companies to spread the word to
their customers."
And so far, the gamer customers
seem satisfied. "GamerSaloon.com
is by far the best online gaming site
I have ever seen:' reported Err Piece
(user name)."It has come a long way
since I first became a member two
years ago:'
IronEagleX says, "It helps add a little
spice to our already addicting game
play. When money is added to a game,
the stakes are raised and the play of
any video game is intensified. When
there is nothing on the line, everyone
is all talk; but once money is thrown
down, the talking stops and the action
takes place. To the victors go the
spoils. I have a nice side income from
all my victories:'
Bruce Liebowitz of Farmington
Hills, who is Beyond Gaming's land-
lord, is happy he also became an
investor in the company.
"This type of competition is in its
infancy now, but Gabe and Noah are
on the cusp of a new phenomenon in
video gaming," he said.
"The two are real pioneers, astute
entrepreneurs, very innovative, and, in
a short period of time, they've really
obliterated their competition. They're
on the verge of a great accomplish-
ment in this business!" ❑

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