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The crypto industry is proliferating worldwide and quickly becoming a part of everyday life amongst the global population. A big trend that has been evolving over the last few years is major teams in the sporting industry partnering with crypto entities. The football industry is a prime example of this, with many popular teams signing sponsorship deals with different crypto firms.
“The last while has seen many partnerships between football teams and crypto firms” says CEO of cryptocurrency trading tool, Bitcoin Method review, particularly in the UK with major teams like English Premier League (EPL) winners, Manchester City signing a sponsorship deal with crypto exchange, OKX for the 2022/23 season. They are joined by Arsenal, PSG, Juventus and Barcelona, who have also inked significant deals with various crypto firms. One of the most recent partnerships of this nature is one between professional English football team, Crawley Town F.C who have collaborated with the crypto industry to sign their newest midfielder using an NFT vote.
The recent vote took place for verified NFTs hodlers via a temporary Discord channel. Crawley Town F.C has followed through on a community vote by fans and non-fungible token (NFT) holders who were recently given a say on which player the team should recruit to join the team next. This vote was the first team decision opened up to fans and took place for verified NFTs hodlers via a temporary Discord channel. Votes were also taken from nearly 1,000 season ticket holders.
Crawley Town co-owner and former ESPN gambling analyst Preston Johnson has emphasised the significance of being able to offer fans a stake in the club via NFTs. He mentioned that “A lot of NFT projects are just speculation with no real tangible spine, no real true story. Having a football club to root for every week? That’s a spine that people attach themselves to”. He added that if they can “bring that to this crypto audience, especially if we’re able to actually achieve promotion and move up the ranks of the English football league, then it’s an even bigger story people all around the world can be part of”. Following the vote, Crawley Town announced the signing of Jayden Davis on a free transfer after the 20-year-old midfielder completed a successful trial with the club.
Crawley Town was purchased by American crypto and Web3 firm, WAGMI United (We’re All Gonna Make It) for approximately $20 million in the first quarter of 2022. The firm, founded by Johnson and derivatives trader, Eben Smith is owned by more than 30 investors, and has a long-term goal of taking the team all the way up to join the likes of Liverpool F.C. and Manchester City in the EPL. This year, WAGMI United rolled out alternate Crawley Town jerseys that could only be purchased via its NFTs. These tokens also offer hodler’s certain benefits like voting on team decisions regarding player transfers etc. as well as free Adidas merch and exclusive in-person and virtual events. WAGMI United initially rolled out 10,000 NFTs, with approximately1933 remaining.
As technology advances, things like digital assets that were once seen as taboo, are fast becoming an integrated part of everyday life and are starting to feature more and more in many big industries. The landscape of the sporting industry is quickly adapting to accommodate the crypto industry - it’s only a matter of time until most popular sports collaborate with crypto firms to stay ahead.
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