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On February 13th, 2020, world-renowned football club FC Barcelona announced an upcoming blockchain-powered token offering. In the near future, fans will be able to purchase ‘Barca Fan Tokens’. Token holders will have voting rights for certain club decisions — such as the music played once a goal is scored — along with a reward system where points can be redeemed for “once-in-a-lifetime” experiences.
The FC Barcelona ‘Barca Fan Token’ Explained
FC Barcelona is the fourth-most valuable sports team in the world, worth some $4.06 billion. It’s wealthier than any other football team in terms of revenue, as it generates over €840 million annually.
The club is known for its high level of fan engagement. FC Barcelona supporters comprise four different tiers, three of which have certain rights and privileges.
Now, FC Barcelona is taking its fan engagement to another level. Through a partnership with blockchain platform Socios.com, FC Barcelona will offer Barca Fan Tokens.
Fans who purchase the tokens will have voting rights on a number of topics. They will also receive reward points for different actions taken on the platform. Fans will then be able to redeem their points for exclusive merchandise and “unique once-in-a-lifetime experiences” involving FC Barcelona.
Josep Pont, FC Barcelona board member said,
“This agreement will give us the chance to set up innovative marketing and partnership activations with a clear focus on the digital realm to take the Club closer to our fans around the world.”
Alexandre Dreyfus, CEO and Founder of Socios.com and Chiliz added,
“We are very excited to welcome FC Barcelona to Socios.com, and even more excited to start engaging with their massive fan base around the world. With over 300 million fans worldwide, Barça’s fandom spans countries as well as cultures. The Club is without a doubt the most renowned and the most supported football club in the world and we can’t wait to see their fans start to influence Club decisions.”
Barca Fan Tokens will become available in Q2 of 2020. A total of 40 million Barca Fan Tokens will be offered in the token sale, at a price of €2 per token.
What are the Benefits of Tokenization with Sports Teams?
FC Barcelona will constitute the first high-profile professional sports organization to launch a token offering. The benefits of tokenization in sports has been anticipated for some time, however.
Josh Stein, the CEO of security token platform Harbor, revealed as far back as 2018 that professional sports teams were interested in tokenization. One process in particular, he explained, can allow for teams to raise funds by selling a small portion of ownership — with more than just economic value.
Included in that ownership could be a number of unique benefits which are otherwise unavailable to fans. For example, token owners could get first access to season tickets, take exclusive guided tours of the locker room, meet and greet with a few players before a game, or even meet with the coaches to talk strategy.
These are all experiences with not just economic value, but psychological value. The latter is otherwise rare to find, Stein emphasized.
Harbor is a platform specializing in the tokenization of regulated securities. While the company has seen success in tokenizing assets such as real estate funds, Harbor has yet to assist in tokenizing equity involving sports teams.
What do you think about FC Barcelona launching a token offering? Will similar token offerings become popular in professional sports? We want to know what you think in the comments section below.
Image courtesy of FCBN.