Cristiano Ronaldo, Kylian Mbappé, Snoop Dogg… The interest of sports and entertainment stars in NFT is growing more and more, between projects, collaborations and investments in specialized companies, a way to make their fans know these unique digital objects.
The NFT, an acronym for ‘non-fungible token’, is a digital format that allows you to associate any virtual object, be it an image, a photo, an animation, a video or a song, a certificate of authenticity engraved on a blockchain (or ‘blockchain’), the same technology on which cryptocurrencies such as ‘Bitcoin’ are based.
Two announcements were recently made that symbolize the acceleration of a trend that started a year ago: less than a week after an “exclusive” and “multi-annual” collaboration between the cryptocurrency transfer platform Binance and football star Cristiano Ronaldo was made official. to create a collection of NFT, it was the turn of another ace, Kylian Mbappé, to reveal his interest in the universe of ‘Web3’, the new internet.
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The world champion for the French national team will join as “investor and exclusive ambassador of the French ‘startup’ Sorare, creator of an online sports trading card game that combines the hot sectors: the NFT and the virtual sports leagues (Fantasy Sports).
After tennis champion Serena Williams, who became a member of the board of directors and partner of Sorare since January of this year, as well as soccer players Gerard Piqué, Rio Ferdnand and Antoine Griesmann, the French company now has another star.
“My relationship with the fans is very important to me, so the idea of providing unprecedented experiences and access through this NFT platform (with Binance) is something I wanted to be a part of”, said Cristiano Ronaldo, one of the most popular on the internet, with 500 million followers on their social networks.
If French actor Omar Sy and NBA basketball player Rudy Gobert support ‘The Metaverse Marauders’, a collection of 12,000 NFT representing an entire panel of extraterrestrial creatures, other sports and entertainment stars such as Neymar, Eminem and Paris Hilton have joined the ‘Bored Ape Yatch Club’, a closed circle of NFT holders related to unique images and sold at over US$200,000 each.
Singer Justin Bieber, for example, paid $1.3 million for his in January this year.
“It’s really like the real world (of collectors): there are people in the NFT who know a lot, are interested and spend time, and then there are others who adhere to the fashion and buy what they were told to buy,” explains John Karp to AFP. , president of the NFT Factory and industry expert, comparing interest in the ‘Bored Ape Yacht Club’ to that of the ‘new rich’.
A case contrary to that of Snoop Dogg. The American rapper revealed in September last year that he was hiding behind the anonymous profile of ‘Cozomo de Medici’, a famous collector in the NFT world for the purchase of several famous artworks, which goes beyond the ‘Bored Ape Yacht Club’. ‘.
“We understood that there was a very authentic space, a real knowledge. His advice counts, his point of view is important. He is recognized as an informed person”, emphasizes Karp.
On the other hand, there are cases of ‘influencers’ who launch their NFT collections to ‘monetize’ their audiences, although several examples have shown that these assets quickly lose value in secondary markets, where the expected revenue is not produced.
After earning $1 million thanks to his fans’ near-immediate purchase of NFT, singer Shawn Mendes saw his value quadruple in just one year.
After generating $44.22 billion in 2021, the NFT market experienced a 75% drop in spending volume between February and mid-April, according to Chainalysis.
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