A recent statement by the president of the Spanish football club Barcelona Joan Laporta confirms that the team is working on the Barca metaverse. There are also plans to introduce an exclusive club cryptocurrency.
Laporta said during the first day of Mobile World Congress in Barcelona that the NFT collection is also planned. Barca attempted to create an NFT collection in partnership with Ownix in November 2021 but withdrew due to the arrest of a businessman linked to the company.
Laporta said about the club's decision to go metaverse on its own:
"We are developing our metaverse and have refused to be associated with a cryptocurrency company. We want to create our own cryptocurrency and understand that we have to do it ourselves; there is enough talent for that. Along with blockchain, there are great opportunities and business opportunities."
He further said that players support this and that as a modern club using social networks, players' contracts have provisions for the NFT and the metaverse.
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No main cryptocurrency sponsor for FC Barcelona
Barcelona did not rush to sponsorship from cryptocurrency exchanges. The key turned down €70 million worth of offers before reaching an agreement with the music streaming service Spotify, which replaced long-time sponsor Rakuten. Concerns about the volatility of the cryptocurrency industry led the club to dismiss cryptocurrency companies as primary sponsors. Now, however, Laporta believes that keeping up with innovation is the path of the future that the clubs want to be a part of.
Barca has always been innovative in the use and adaptation of new technologies and we want it to continue. We know blockchain will be important in the coming years and the club doesn't want to miss it.
Barca wants to be able to "survive financially" against other football clubs that have the support of large corporations and foreign investors. Laporta said:
We are different because we will survive financially from what we can generate through the sports industry.
What could be purchased with the new cryptocurrency?
The team has previously worked with Socios and Chiliz to bring fan tokens to the general public. Chiliz is a blockchain startup for fan voting and Socios.com is a reward platform. With the digital currency $CHZ, fans can buy Barca fans tokens. They are then given the opportunity to vote for certain club decisions and a chance for prizes.
It is unclear what will be available for the team's new cryptocurrency. Will it be a fan token, such as the $CHZ token, or will it be used to purchase tickets and club goods? The new NFT collection will in turn be used as part of a project that will "help the club finances."
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