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Million dollar chess tournament makes first move

Press Release
2.96K   //    08 Apr 2014, 13:03 IST


Las Vegas, Nevada - The Millionaire Chess Open, a ground-breaking chess tournament offering the biggest prize fund in chess history for an Open event, will checkmate the competition October 9th at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas.

The very first event, which boasts a million dollars in prize money, is being billed as a game-changer for a sport that has been struggling to capitalize on its huge fan base of amateur players.

“Chess is ready for this kind of bold undertaking,” says Maurice Ashley, an International Grandmaster and a partner at Millionaire Chess, the company hosting the event. “The game has seen a dramatic uptick in interest recently, and this tournament is designed to ride that wave. With the incredible explosion of scholastic chess as well as the massive increase in the number of online players, we believe there is an opportunity to capture huge market share.”

The tournament will feature the use of many high-tech novelties never before seen at a chess competition. Some of these innovations, currently being worked on by the Playful Systems Lab at MIT’s Media Lab, include algorithms that predict moves by a specific player, in essence hacking the mind of a Grandmaster. Organizers expect the technologies to find wider applications in the areas of neuroscience, psychology, stress management and human performance.

Amy Lee and Maurice Ashely

Amy Lee and Maurice Ashely

Millionaire Chess intends to revolutionize the chess world and while seven Grandmasters have already registered early, the tournament hopes to bring in thousands of amateurs from around the world and of all ages.

“We understand that chess suffers from a perception problem,” says Ashley. “Most people think the game is just too difficult or too slow to capture the public’s attention. But chess has been around for over 1,500 years for a reason. It’s that enduring fascination that we believe our company can tap into, and we expect this tournament will help take chess to the next level.”

Amy Lee, an entrepreneur who is a partner at Millionaire Chess, sees the project as a launching point for other undertakings.

“The Millionaire Chess Open is just the first step in our business branding itself as a global events and PR company,” she said in a recent interview. “We’re thrilled by the enthusiastic response we have gotten so far. It makes us confident that our vision to change a game like chess is an idea whose time has come.”

To learn more about Millionaire Chess, visit To receive updates on the event, join the Facebook page at or follow the Twitter handle at: @highstakeschess