The Premier League is following in the footsteps of Major League Baseball by striking up an NFT partnership deal in order to further develop fan engagement. The Premier League’s deal, with Consensys, is set to be worth around $434 million over the next four years.
A further deal with Dapper Labs is also set to be in place for further down the line to acquire rights for Premier League NFT videos. It is said to be true that Candy Digital and Sorare were the two potential partners that missed out.
Consensys and The Premier League
Approximately 20 Premier League clubs have already approved the partnership with Consensys who will have the rights to be able to mint NFTs (non-fungible tokens) based on still images taken from English football’s top flight.
These still image NFTs will be brought to the market creating a modern-day version of Panini’s traditional stickers and trading cards but in a digital format.
While the bid was won by Consensys, it may have come as a bit of a surprise that another NFT giant in Sorare did not win the partnership deal, despite likely offering the largest sum of money, and already having various links to numerous Premier League clubs through their current NFT fantasy football game.
This is likely to come down to the fact that Sorare is currently under scrutiny by the UK gambling commission and this is likely to have a huge influence on the Premier League’s final decision.
Dapper Labs and The Premier League
It is widely reported that Dapper Labs will be the chosen partner of the Premier League for the video rights. This shouldn’t really come as any great surprise when looking at their success within the NBA and NFL leagues as well as and UFC scene.
Dapper Labs’ ‘moments’ space with NBA Top Shot had a meteoric rise to popularity within the videoing space and it’s no wonder the Premier League is keen to have the same sort of exposure, as well as the 20 odd Premier League clubs that have already signed up for the action.
Video Moments Set to Enter The Premier League
All of Dapper Lab’s offerings are offered through their very own blockchain: Flow. Flow is a decentralized web3 network that supports a variety of different creators in producing their content. Currently, over 3,000 developers, creators, and artists are building communities on Flow.
Initially, Dapper Labs was made popular through their kitty-based NFT offerings: CryptoKitties. However, now they have branched out and away from feline-based NFTs and are penetrating the sporting collectibles market, and in a big way.
Dapper Labs‘ partnership with the Major League Basketball Association back in 2019 was extremely significant as it paved the way for ‘NBA Top Shots’ which is an NFT marketplace on Flow where traders can buy and sell their favorite digital moments from within the league in video forms.
In 2021 it was estimated that the platform traded approximately $780 million worth of NBA Top Shots ‘Moments’. This is what is waiting to enter the NFT collectibles market for the most popular soccer league in the world: The Premier League.
In fact, the company is already quite heavily involved in the world of soccer due to a partnership with Spanish League, La Liga. So, in effect, they have already had a trial run of what they are set to bring to the Premier League and its 20 clubs.
The ‘La Liga Experience’ is set to launch on Flow sometime this summer with a setup that is pretty similar to their ‘NBA Moments’ offerings, allowing sports fans to collect and own some of the most talked-about in-game moments, storing them on their very own blockchain.
Dapper Labs aim to make every transaction as easy as possible and they have integrated credit card payment to their Dapper Wallet which is needed to transact the NFT moments. This means for those users who are not entirely comfortable using cryptocurrency, well, they don’t have to. And for those that are comfortable, the payment offering in cryptocurrency is also there.
Caty Tedman who is the Head of Partnerships for Dapper Labs has expressed her excitement in an interview with GamesBeat about the link up with La Liga as well as the potential market size and fan engagement.
“We’re extremely excited to have LaLiga join the Dapper Labs family of products. We’ve been in conversations with them for a very long time. They needed to vet the technology. The product is really about engaging fans across the world. We think about NFT’s as really a unit of fandom. And so this is a great way to reward fans based on the depth of their fandom.”
Tedman also went on to talk about the NBA Topshots offering can be a blueprint for success within the major soccer leagues’ NFT markets:
“The thing that appeals to every league is this concept of deepening engagement and doing that in a way that drives a revenue stream, not just for them, but potentially for their consumers. Our active users visit the NBA Top Shot site 300 times a month.”
Endorsed by the Stars
Some of the Premier League’s biggest names as well as names from around the globe have come out in support of the partnerships forming between the Premier League, Consensys, and Dapper Labs.
In fact, Chelsea legend, John Terry, recently sold a ‘John Terry Ape’ for approximately $7,000. Terry is not the only Premier League star to be actively involved in the NFT market.
Paul Pogba of Manchester United has recently endorsed the NFT project CryptoDragons, announcing his intentions to purchase NFT dragon eggs.
Other famous football players involved in the NFT market include Neymar, Mbappe, and Alexander-Arnold to name a few.
So, get prepared for what’s around the corner within the sporting NFT market, and most importantly, the Premier League NFT market as some significant partnerships are forming with huge game players with successful track records within the space.