TXI Presents Rounders, Part 3: Overcoming A Bad Beat

Rounders, Not Your Average Poker Club

Over the last year, entertainment venues have been dealt a bad hand. COVID shattered businesses and those that remained were left with uncertainty. Despite challenges beyond their wildest dreams, Rounders Social Club in San Antonio Texas reinvented the Poker Room into a private, members-only Social Club. Dave Smart and Eric Thomas opened Rounders in 2018. Today, Rounders provides a safe, legal space for players to enjoy their favorite poker games.


Overcoming A Bad Beat

Rounders Card Club has to overcome challenges many of which other small businesses in Texas have had to endure such as COVID in 2020 and Snowpocalypse in 2021 which devastated the San Antonio region and beyond. Additionally, Rounders had to face adversity and legality issues from the very beginning. In poker, a bad beat is when a player has what appears to be a strong hand, loses nevertheless. Although Rounders has been dealt bad hands, they have been able to overcome their bad beats and came out with a royal flush.


About the Texas Innovators

Eric Thomas grew up in Virginia and moved to San Antonio when he was 22 to work at Columbia 300, the world’s largest bowling ball manufacturer where he would meet his soon-to-be business partner, Dave Smart.


Dave Smart joined a pro bowling tour and traveled the world at 19. After his pro-bowling years, he joined Columbia 300. During this time, Dave became a great poker player and played professionally for three years.


Dave and Eric have been friends since their days at Columbia 300 and soon after started investing in companies and small businesses together. They often played poker together and began to notice these poker rooms popping up around Texas. With Dave’s poker expertise and Eric's business savvy, they joined forces to create Rounders.


Texas Innovators is a digital magazine and news platform that celebrates the achievements of our neighbors. Across Texas, people are working every day to make our lives better. The social worker who figures out a unique way to affect the lives of children, the researcher working on a cure for cancer, or the business owner who has identified a niche in a growing market. We are proud to showcase the people in Texas who are innovating, trailblazing, and making us better as a whole.

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