Movers and SHAKERS
NFT Sports Collectibles Marketplace for Company Co-Founded by Tom Brady
NFTs are quickly moving from obscure assets to more widely sought-after, collected, or traded, investments. Part of any asset’s value is scarcity. Each unique NFT has scarcity designed into it. The second is liquidity; this occurs with an active central market. The marketplace for one-of-a-kind digital sports memorabilia is being created - DraftKings is aggressively working to become the central market and creator of desirable NFTs
DraftKings began as an American daily fantasy sports contest and sports betting operator. In April 2020, DraftKings went public through a SPAC merger which allowed an injection of capital and the ability to more readily expand into areas of related businesses.
Yesterday (July 21), in a press release, DraftKings, Inc. (Nasdaq: DKNG) announced: “Company Becomes the Exclusive Seller of Sports-Related NFTs From Autograph’s Officially Licensed Talent Roster.” As part of the announcement, the company revealed its plans to launch DraftKings Marketplace. The Marketplace will be a digital collectibles ecosystem designed for mainstream accessibility that offers curated NFT drops and also allows secondary transactions. After launched, customers will be able to more easily buy, sell and trade digital collectibles across sports, entertainment, and culture using their DraftKings account. Additionally, as part of a new affiliation, DraftKings Marketplace will become the exclusive distributor of sports-related NFT content from the platform. Autograph was founded by sports legends Derek Jeter, Tom Brady, Wayne Gretsky, and others. Its business is the official licensing of prominent athletes and celebrities to provide a varied assortment of digital collectibles.
“The NFT boom has reinvented the collectibles industry and driven excitement to early-adopting audiences worldwide—including the DraftKings community,” said Matt Kalish, DraftKings co-founder and president. “DraftKings Marketplace will sit at the center of this technological and cultural phenomenon, providing our immense existing customer base with an easily accessible experience that rivals all legacy marketplaces. This initial vision in collaboration with Autograph, and its coveted collection of official digital collectibles, is a vital first step as we enter the emergent NFT market. We aim to usher in this new era by introducing millions of collectors to this evolving space while providing beloved content through an intuitive interface built to win over the long term.”
The initial drops on DraftKings Marketplace will be the “Pre-Season Access” collection. It will be priced in $USD and showcase NFTs of legendary athletes from Autograph’s talent roster and partners. The Marketplace will also serve as a secondary-sales platform where registered users can buy, sell and trade digital collectibles brought to the online market.
“As the world becomes more comfortable with digital ownership and collection, we see an incredible opportunity to bring users high-quality and personalized content from their favorite athletes, artists, and franchises,'' said Dillon Rosenblatt, Founder and CEO, Autograph. “NFTs are the perfect medium to connect users to both the things they love and those who share those interests, and we want to leverage today’s incredible partnerships to provide continued value to our community.”
Autograph’s advisory board which is largely made up of athletes and entertainers will help design custom NFTs exclusively for Autograph then will begin rolling them out later in the summer. While DraftKings Marketplace will be the exclusive purveyor of sports NFTs from Autograph, the collaboration may eventually branch into other verticals like entertainment, lifestyle and culture. Autograph recently teamed up with Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF.A, LGF.B), to be able to derive NFT content from iconic films and television. This could include, The Hunger Games, Rambo IV & V, Dirty Dancing, Blair Witch, Mad Men, John Wick, The Divergent Series, The Expendables, The Twilight Saga and other well-recognized titles.
It would seem that blockchain technology has gone past the tipping point where there is now a race among companies to be the first and most entrenched in what they hope will become lucrative businesses. As with anything new, there is risk. As with most things rewarding, risk is an expected ingredient.
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