Italian football club Juventus has announced a partnership with blockchain gaming company Sorare, which will enable fans to acquire tokenized digital collectible cards of its world-famous players such as Cristiano Ronaldo.
The Paris-based company expands its presence with one of Europe’s football giants while also maintaining similar partnerships with AS Roma, Schalke, West Ham United, Napoli, among others.
Juventus joins a growing list of well-known European clubs who have chosen Sorare to offer rare digitally collectible “cards” that are linked to the real-life performances of their players.
Founded in 2018, Sorare is an agnostic platform that is backed by well-known names in the crypto space such as ConsenSys and Ubisoft. Sorare relies on the Ethereum blockchain to allow users to collect player cards from their favorite soccer teams, trade them, and play with them in its gaming arena.
Its unique offering, which is similar to regular football fantasy leagues, has made it the first licensed crypto company to distribute cryptocards of football players. The startup has attracted several thousands of auctions, with a percentage going to their partners of football clubs and leagues.
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To ensure each player card cannot be copied, digital cards available on Sorare are non-fungible tokens (NFTs) that represent football players, thus securing users’ experiences.
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Founded 120 years ago, Juventus FC boasts the largest football fan base in Italy and one of the largest in the world. The club holds a record-breaking number of Italian league and cup titles and also has won many top European championships.
Crypto went mainstream with many sports sponsorships a couple of years ago, but as the price of cryptocurrencies tanked, the promotion budgets also dried up. Although not exactly a partnership, this collaboration helps introduce new audiences to cryptocurrencies.
Sorare’s business has apparently gone from strength to strength despite launching in a challenging market, achieving growth with signing more teams as other crypto players lay off staff and shut down.
“We are very proud to have signed this agreement with such an Italian heavyweight. We see this as a new key step in our vision to onboard the best soccer clubs from around the world and bring blockchain-gaming to football fans around the world,” Sorare CEO Nicolas Julia told CoinDesk.