Here's your weekly review on what happened at the intersection of NFTs and Sports:
- ⚽ Premier League likely to go with ConsenSys and Dapper
- 🏀 College madness backed by NFT projects
- 📰 PwC report on "The future of digital assets in sports"
Let's have a closer look! 👀
⚽ Premier League likely to go with ConsenSys and Dapper
Big news: "The Premier League is poised to announce its official non-fungible token (NFT) partners in agreements that could be worth more than UK£434 million (US$589 million) over four years. According to The Athletic, clubs have already approved an arrangement where ConsenSys gains the rights to mint NFTs based on still images, while a deal for Dapper Labs to acquire the video rights is also being considered. Candy Digital, which has a NFT partnership with Major League Baseball (MLB), and Sorare are the two firms to have missed out.
🏀 College madness backed by NFT projects
"Overtime is putting a crypto spin on its college basketball bracket competition this year, mixing elements of NFT Madness with the more traditional March variety. Last week, the digital sports brand quickly sold 2,500 blockchain-based passes for roughly $80 each (using the SOL cryptocurrency). On Thursday, holders of the passes will be delivered a completed NCAA men’s tournament bracket, filled out algorithmically so that no two brackets are the same. Then fans will be able to buy and sell the brackets on the Magic Eden marketplace, with the top 100 sheets earning a percentage of a payout expected to exceed $100,000. The random assignment of brackets takes inspiration from other NFT projects, where collectors purchase a digital art NFT and then wait for the “reveal” to find out how rare of an image they have. In this case, owners will be hoping for a Gonzaga or Arizona bracket."
And there's another one: "Sports betting company DraftKings is releasing its first in-house NFT collection this week centered around the NCAA’s March Madness tournament in what the company calls a new opportunity to gamify the fan experience. The Boston-based digital gaming company will begin selling its College Hoops Collection on Wednesday. The first of the NFTs, titled “Going Dancin” will sell for a flat $10 and only 6,464 of the collectibles are available. Each of the NFTs will feature an image of a cartoon basketball, whose appearance will change based on the type of NFT released at different times of the tournament."
All the above happens shortly after recent news about a new marketplace: "Last year non-fungible token (NFT) platform Recur raised $50 million to penetrate the new collegiate sports rights industry. Less than six months later, Recur has just announced the launch of NFTU, a digital marketplace dedicated to college sport NFTs. Its debut series Tip Off features collectibles of over 100 current and former basketball players across 50 American universities."
📰 PwC report on "The future of digital assets in sports"
PwC has published a "Sports Outlook 2022" report that also covers the vast potential for NFTs and how they will likely shape the future of sports. In the report they look at three use cases and their potential to shape fan experience and boost bottom lines:
Collectible NFT sales
Collectible NFTs — typically licensed by leagues, teams or individual athletes — essentially serve as trading cards for the digital world.
Season ticket member NFTs
Many teams have started to consider how tickets could become digital tokens, providing ticket holders — especially season ticket members — with access to special content in the real world or around the stadium experience.
Virtual access tokens
Collectible NFTs and STM tokens are, in some ways, just evolutions and enhancements of traditional loyalty programs. But combining the metaverse with digital assets — including both fungible and non-fungible tokens — enables a whole new market for more fan segments.
🤓 Wrapping it up
So what have we learned in this week's issue?
- A multi-partner approach is an option for rights holders. The Premier League seems to split their NFT rights between two partners, one for still images and one for video content. And this is understandable. Not only does it reduce the dependency on just one partner, but it also gives the option to select partners depending on their individual strength, e.g. with Dapper Labs clearly being the leader in video content. It also helps them to gain different experiences, as they can compare the two partners with each other. A good move in our opinion.
- College sports are popular NFT projects, creativity wins. We've talked about this before: Upcoming stars are a valuable asset in the collectible world, as they might become superstars in the future. So when an event like March Madness is happening, the NFT world gets active. And the initiatives are quite different: Overtime seems to have put a lot of thoughts and research into their bracket NFTs, while DraftKings goes with a rather uninspiring standard drop. Our take: If you're jumping on the bandwagon of a popular event or topic it's important to put some creativity into it, as the competition keeps growing.
- Expect various Sports NFT reports this year. With a hot topic like NFTs, all the obvious organisations will publish some sort of content to mark their territory. Their quality will vary though and many will stay on a rather high level. Like the report from PwC which is marketed as a playbook but in reality is just a gathering of "what might their evolution look like" paragraphs about a few topics whose selection method is unclear. We'd like to see more depth and structure in future reports.
And that's it for this weeks issue! And as always: Feel free to reach out for feedback and to discuss all things NFT and sports! To stay up to date: Make sure to follow us on Instagram and Twitter for stats, drop announcements and more.