A Las Vegas poker game will deliver a record payout of over $12 million to the winner, and make at least $3.3 million to help charity water projects worldwide, organizers say.
Over 30 participants, including a number of Asian businessmen, have already signed up to pay the $1 million fee just to take part in the competition in aid of One Drop, which backs water projects in parched areas around the world.
A contribution of $111,111 from each entry fee to the "Big One for One Drop" event at the 2012 World Series of Poker will go to the Canadian charity, said its boss and Cirque du Soleil founder Guy Laliberte.
The game takes place from July 1-3 in Las Vegas. With 30 participants the prize money will be at least $26,000, with an estimated $12.3 for the winner, beating the previous record of $12 million set in 2006, organizers said.
"It is an exciting moment and it is wonderful to see the poker community's generosity, where organizations, players and fans are all coming together to support ONE DROP," said Laliberte.
"Whether by entering the BIG ONE for ONE DROP, becoming a poker ambassador, making a donation or simply changing their water consumption habits, everyone can get involved.
And he said: "Everyone should be concerned, because a child dies every 20 seconds from a water-related disease-but together we can beat the odds."
The most recently joined participants include US poker professionals Erik Seidel and Justin Smith, but also others including Asian businessmen Paul Phua and Richard Yong, said a statement by the organizers.