The football industry, or as Americans prefer to say the ‘soccer’ industry, has been slowly adopting cryptocurrencies. Brand ambassadors, blockchain commercials during half-time, shirt sponsoring and crypto commercial boarding advertisements are some of the trends that we are seeing in the global Football Industry.
In this article I will elaborate on the industry and the trends that we are currently seeing. I expect the cryptocurrency adoption in the football industry to continue to increase as there are still a lot of projects that raised a massive amount of funds of which a big part will go towards marketing.
Lionel Messi, by some considered, one of the greatest football players of all time, became a brand ambassador for Sirin Labs. Blockchain-based hardware device manufacturer Sirin Labs raised 157,000,000 USD to develop and market several highly-secure smart devices like their blockchain enhanced smartphone with a built-in cold wallet, called FINNEY™ (named after computer scientist and one of the first Bitcoin users, or fellow Bitcoin-creator Hal Finney).
Belgian National football player, Eden Hazard and Argentinian International Sergio Aguero joined forces to promote the all-sports platform, that aims to build a blockchain focused on launching sports-related digital applications.
Ex-Chelsea player Didier Drogba has become a brand ambassador for the social platform all.me, that focuses on crypto traders.
Football playing cannibal Luiz Suarez gave a shout out to prediction market competitor Stox on Twitter last year.
Commercials and sponsorships
Hdac, an Internet-of-Things (IoT) based subsidiary of Hyundai, has launched an ICO last year to raise capital for their innovative blockchain platform. During the FIFA World cup this past summer in Russia, they showed their commercial during half-time. A link to the commercial:
Online investment platform eToro which has a user base of 9 million users worldwide has signed an agreement with the English Premier League for several sponsor activities, like sponsoring the wooden and led billboards during soccer matches. Besides regular stocks, eToro also offers the trading of cryptocurrencies.
Digital asset exchange platform COSS.IO has also been advertising in the Italian Series A Football League.
Blockchain project Libereum that wants to focus on growing a large network in the sports industry wants to buy Dutch football club Roda JC.
Wolverhampton Wanderers FC has partnered with Polish cryptocurrency exchange CoinDeal. As of this football season, CoinDeal will be their shirt sponsor.
Besides ‘The Wolves’, Arsenal also has a crypto project shirt sponsor which is online crypto betting site CashBet coin.
Gibraltar Premier Division team Gibraltar United will be the first Football Club that will pay their players in cryptocurrency, starting next season.
Football players with their own cryptocurrency token
The SelfSell platform, that aims to tokenize people, enabled James Rodriguez to launch his own cryptocurrency token called JR10. Selfsell will also launch SelfDax a decentralized digital asset exchange that enables for personalized SelfSell based tokens to be traded on the platform. JR10 will be one of the tokens that can be traded on the exchange. The purpose of JR10 token and its main benefit to token holders will need to be addressed and is not yet made public.
Former English National player Michael Owen is also launching his own token, conveniently called OWN. It is priced at around $ 10,- per token. It seems like Michael Owen is heavily invested in cryptocurrency projects as he is also part of the Singaporean based Global Crypto Offering Exchange (GCOX). By being an advisor for the project Michael Owen is joined by Boxing legend Manny Pacquiao and Singer Jason Derulo.
London Football Exchange (LFE) has executed an ICO in which they allegedly raised over 70,000,000 USD at the beginning of this year to launch the worlds’ first Football Club Stock Exchange. They planned to raise 350,000,000 USD as that was the project’s hardcap.
Two major league UK soccer clubs, Newcastle United and Cardiff City are researching the possibility to launch an ICO. Both clubs are not in the best financial position so they asked sports investment and funding platform SportyCo to look into the option of launching an ICO. Tokens in the sale can be sold as Security tokens, which means that investors would gain actual value in the form of company shares, dividend or decision-making power.
Tokenized football fan voting platform, socios.com is initiating a Fan Token Offering (FTO) for French Ligne 1 Football club Paris Saint Germain in which they raise money in exchange for utility tokens. Supporters that own these tokens will be incentivized in a certain way.
Football players often times land big endorsement deals that earn them millions of Dollars. There are a lot of crypto projects that profited from the bull run last year and have the funds to acquire major football stars that join their project as an ambassador.
With a fanbase of around 3.5 Billion people worldwide, the football industry can play a big factor in raising the awareness of cryptocurrencies and related financial services and products.
Football fans from all over the world will be seeing a lot of cryptocurrency projects when watching their weekly soccer matches. Let’s hope this increasing global awareness will attract some new investors into the cryptocurrency industry.
As I see it, the only thing that is positive about these trends is the fact that more people get to come familiar with cryptocurrency. Sports stars endorsing projects they probably didn’t research is one thing, but launching your own cryptocurrency token to me only screams money grab. The utility of those tokens is not specified anywhere but I assume you are not owning a piece of that soccer star by purchasing its token.
Disclaimer: This article is not intended as investment advice. It is just my personal opinion. You should always do your own research. I am not rewarded for writing this article.
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