BitB Cash as an idea was conceived back in October 2016. Our founder, Donald Rae (better known as d7o1d1s0) felt there was a gap in the poker coaching market for an elite coaching-for-profits organisation. The problem was fairly simple – and like most things, it was the consequence of bad, misaligned incentives.
Poker Coaching – A Rock and a Hard Place
Let’s say you’re an aspiring online poker player with dreams of going pro. You’re grinding away at perhaps 25 or 50nl, with a bankroll of $1,000 to $5,000, and you’ve decided to invest in yourself and get some poker coaching. What are your choices?
Well, the most obvious option is that you can pay someone to coach you by the hour. There is no shortage of people offering this service, but consider their payoff – their only financial incentive is to extract as many paid hours as they can from the client. Often this manifests in the form of discounts for people willing to buy many hours in advance, which seems fair enough, but in some situations coaches have been known to knowingly drip-feed information to their students, to keep them on the line for as long as possible (and so as many sessions as possible). This is not to say that there is no such thing as an hourly-rate coach who is worth the money, and it’s certainly not saying that all hourly-rate coaches are so immoral as to deliberately hold back information. But it’s a difficult quandary for a money-conscious microstakes grinder – can I trust this coach to give me as much value as he can per hour I pay him, when his financial incentive is to do the opposite? Is it worth parting with a substantial chunk of my hard-won bankroll up front, in hopes I’ll learn enough to progress to the next level?
The other main option is to join a coaching for profits group. Here, the incentives are much more aligned – the coaches only make money when you make money, holding back any information would hurt both the player and the coach, so the player can rest assured that the coaches will do everything reasonable within their power to help them play better poker. Also, there is a distinct advantage for the player in that large amounts of information are delivered upfront – before the player has paid for it via playing hands and winning money at the tables. So the player stays more liquid, paying in future winnings rather than current (limited) bankroll. Sounds great right?
Right – we fully believe that joining a CFP is the best route to the top of the game. The problem is that often these groups get very large very quickly, making it difficult for players to get adequate 1on1 time with coaches. Another problem is that the ability level of players within a group can vary massively – meaning 200nl players are lumped in with total beginner 2nl players for group sessions, and have to spend their time listening to basic concepts re-explained.
D7sArmy and Rocky Beginnings
So, in October 2016 a new entity entered the world – humbly named D7’s Army. A skype group was made, a domain name was registered, and a coaching thread paid for and posted on popular poker forum twoplustwo. The difference?- Exclusivity. From the get-go, we were looking only for players who we felt demonstrated the level of hunger and corresponding ability required to be a realistic prospect to make it to midstakes and beyond. As our roster slowly grew, we expanded the coaching team to include George (aka You-Mad-Br0) and Darrell (FourSixFour), plus Cameron (Ishter11). Sky-rocketing profits were eagerly awaited.. but somewhat failed to materialise. Though we shared a sincere passion for the game which we tried to put across in our coaching, our students expressed to us a frustration with the lack of structure/guarantees in our various agreements, plus a lack of clarity regarding accounting and issues with communication. On top of this, many students were feeling overwhelmed with the detail and variety of strategic considerations they were trying to learn all at once, and asked for a more clear learning path.
After months of time-consuming development work, September 2017 saw the launch of d7sarmy.com. It was hoped it would be the answer to our problems- a forum would be the new way to organise sessions, handle accounting and discuss hands in a way that would be easy to navigate for newer arriving students, plus a video/webinar platform would succeed google drive as our preferred method of sharing valuable strategic information.
One crucial factor had been overlooked – security. The day the site was launched, hackers took advantage of a well-known wordpress vulnerability and ripped our entire content library. Within days, coaches who’d worked hard to produce videos explaining the intricacies of the strategies they use were receiving skype messages from hackers offering the contents of our library for chump change. It was an unmitigated disaster, not least for the students who were doing well and parting with a share of their table winnings for information that was now freely available. The whole project reeled from the hack, and after just a few months it was agreed we needed a fresh start and a change of approach.
BitB Cash – a New Beginning
In February 2018, we partnered with bitB Staking to form bitB Cash. Their years of experience helping students achieve their maximum potential in the world of Multi-Table Tournaments (MTTs) helped us restructure and streamline the student learning process, simplify and standardise our offering and vastly, vastly improved our communication with students. With their help, the website you’re now browsing was created, built on vdocipher – a holywood grade storage and video-encryption service with an open (and long unclaimed) bug bounty program. Their data manager created our industry leading accounting system and integrated it into our discord server, where students can now easily browse through coaches hands, blogs or their own answered hands, as well as a support thread for software problems and their own private students thread where they can track their progress over the course of their deal. The site now makes it easy for students to see what material they have available to watch on demand and to track their learning, while coaches have more ways to deliver value to students, including our popular ‘combo quizzes’. The BitB Cash Bootcamp is our flagship course, our attempt to deliver a comprehensive overview of every frequently occurring spot a player is likely to face, and the defacto starting point for all our new players.
Onwards and Upwards
The work is never over, and in fact is just beginning now that we have the proper infrastructure to deliver an outstanding learning experience to our students (and only our students!) across all possible channels. As the sophistication with which poker situations can be analysed continues to increase, we feel that being part of a team is the best and fastest way to the top of No-Limit cash games, not to mention the most fun. If you want to iterate towards excellence with us, apply to join the team today, or check out one of our paid video courses.
GL out there!