Spanish soccer giant FC Barcelona has revealed that it has made a move into the sports cryptocurrency world. What does this mean for Barca fans, and can we expect other sports teams to do something similar?
What Does It Involve?
Barca has teamed up with the fintech platform Chiliz to produce a virtual token on the blockchain. The coins are known as Barca Fan Tokens (BAR) and can be used on the social media app that is called Socios.
Alexandre Dreyfus confirmed that the BAR token will be available on the Chiliz blockchain platform that is based on the Ethereum network. He said that it is confirmation of a “long term vision about fan engagement and monetization”.
Developers at Chiliz have been working on the Socios app for the last few months. Around 100,000 users took part in the beta testing phase. This phase has now been completed.
How Popular Could This Sports Cryptocurrency Be?
According to the official Barcelona site, the club has over 200 million fans on different social media platforms. This makes it the most-followed football club on the planet. They also have the most valuable presence, valued at an estimated $25 million by Forbes.
In terms of social media interactions, this was put at 1.45 billion. This number is more than double the amount registered by fierce rivals Real Madrid.
Fans will receive their BAR tokens as their reward for participating on Socios. They can then use them to buy products or to pay for attending events. A total of 40 million BAR tokens will be issued.
They are ERC-20 tokens with the club acting as chain validators. It is worth pointing out that token holders won’t be able to move these digital assets into personal wallets or over to exchanges.
What Could Happen in the Future?
This isn’t the first sports cryptocurrency to be issued. There are already tokens for Juventus (JUV) and Paris Saint-Germain (PSG). The native Chiliz token (CHZ) will be priced against each of these coins.
The trend for sports cryptocurrency tokens is likely to carry on growing in the future. It seems likely that this remains a niche part of the overall market, though. The fact that they can’t be moved into wallets or exchanges means that they don’t have a trading focus.
However, there is no denying that it will also introduce more people to the concept of digital tokens. Once they are used to using tokens based on their favourite team, it may seem like a small step towards buying Bitcoin, Dash or some other cryptocurrency.