NFTs and the world of sports are on a trajectory of win-win cooperation. Sports fans flock to collect WEB3-powered NFTs and event tickets. While NFTs offer this industry a level of democracy never seen before and offer the great connectivity that fans crave.
The FANtium platform is using NFTs to take athletes to the next level. Fans can use digital assets to bet on the future success of their favorite rising sports stars.
However, instead of placing bets and receiving monetary rewards, NFTs allow fans to connect with athletes and have recurring rewards based on their success.
On October 11, the platform wrapped up a funding round backed by celebrities in both the Web3 and sports worlds, such as Sebastian Borget, co-founder and CEO of the Metaverse Sandbox, an Austrian professional tennis player Dominic Thiem.
Jonathan Ludwig, CEO, and founder of FANtium shared in a panel discussion how athletes have success and can be segmented and democratized through Web3 technology.
Ludwig emphasized that NFTs aren’t just for sports collections:
“It’s about getting involved in the community and the athlete’s career in a way that’s never been done before.”
According to the CEO, blockchain technology eliminates any “intermediaries between fans and athletes” when it comes to their finances and rewards for their success.
Although success is hard to quantify, NFTs can create a fixed share of an athlete’s income. This usually involves bonuses won by an athlete but can also be sponsored income.
Ludwig explained that the FANtium model includes historical data of all athletes in that sport to ensure that:
“Sports fans have an attractive return on investment and athletes have an attractive alternative to funding their careers.”
While Web3’s initiatives in the sports industry often prioritize big sports stars like NFL star quarterback Tom Brady, who has released NFT collections with ESPN, or big teams like the Houston Texans, Ludwig argues that the success of rising talent should also be taken seriously.
“Established professional athletes have earned enough money to cover their running costs,” he said. They can also use the proceeds to “make particularly valuable investments in their careers.” However, for future sports stars, they can use NFTs in this form to develop their careers:
“On the other hand, rising young talent needs capital to start their careers and reach the top.”
Ludwig said this includes both athletes in college and youth.
Recently, in the world of professional sports, the Karate Combat federation announced plans to establish a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) support to manage athletes in the league.
Sports metaverse startup LootMogul also recently received $200 million in funding to accelerate the growth of the gaming-focused metaverse.