Non-fungible token (NFT) sports platform Sorare has partnered with the Spanish Football league LaLiga to launch digital cards of all players in the top two divisions. The partnership with LaLiga, one of the top five leagues globally, brings Sorare one step closer to achieving its goal of having all clubs from the top 20 global leagues in its roster by the end of 2022.
Most other digital collectibles in football are trying to compete with physical trading cards. Some initiatives have reward structures and features that enhance the utility of the collectible beyond the value of ownership. But even then, the product revolves around collecting and trading digital assets.
Sorare’s platform is different because its NFT offering targets the fantasy sports market as opposed to purely card collecting. Users collect and trade cards, using them in a weekly lineup of five players. The cards’ performance depends on how the footballers play on the field, and top results in the competitive weekly tournaments win cryptocurrency.
As a fantasy sports product, the quality of Sorare’s offer depends on its ability to license intellectual property from as many teams as possible.
Before the partnership with LaLiga, Sorare already had Real Madrid, Barcelona, Atlético Madrid and other top Spanish clubs in its network. The addition of all teams in the top two leagues will not only attract fans from teams that were not previously signed with Sorare, but will also make the fantasy sports aspect of the initiative more engaging for LaLiga fans.
While some individual clubs in LaLiga are no strangers to NFTs, this is the first Spanish league-wide official involvement with the technology. However, Sorare already has league deals elsewhere, such as Belgium and Korea.
Sorare has teams in its network from all over the world. While the majority of users are concentrated in Europe, NFTs in sports are becoming globally recognized. Hence Sorare’s platform has opportunities to expand its reach around the world, which will expose LaLiga to a wider audience.
“NFTs are the future of global sports fandom because they allow fans to come together and to feel ownership of the sports they love,” said Sorare’s CEO and co-founder Nicolas Julia. “This partnership isn’t just a sign of Sorare’s growing leadership in the NFT sports space, it is a major signal of intent by the sporting world that it sees Sorare’s unique ability to connect fans with sports through NFTs as a crucial part of their plans for the future.”
Through the partnership with LaLiga, Sorare now has most of the top 100 clubs worldwide, including Liverpool, Bayern Munich, and PSG. The platform also signed the national football teams of Belgium, France and Germany during the 2020 European Championship.