The National Football League in the US has given clubs permission to seek sponsorship from blockchain firms. The teams are not permitted to advertise any particular cryptocurrency or to sell fan tokens.
Given the Advertising Standards Authority’s prohibition on Arsenal FC’s fan token for allegedly deceiving fans about cryptocurrency investment dangers, this step is understandable. Furthermore, the CEO of Socios, which houses the majority of fan tokens, was recently charged with price manipulation.
This is a change from late last summer’s rules prohibiting teams from selling sponsorships to crypto businesses and non-fungible currencies.
The League said it decided in favor of allowing “promotional relationships without undertaking excessive regulator or brand risk,” after an investigation into crypto. They had also been lobbying the Securities and Exchange Commission, the White House, and the departments of Justice and Commerce regarding “issues related to blockchain technology” from July to December 2021.
Renie Anderson, Chief Revenue Officer, and Brian Rolapp, Chief Media and Business Officer for the NFL stated:
“In this evolving regulatory environment, it remains essential that we proceed carefully when evaluating potential commercial opportunities involving blockchain technologies, and conduct appropriate diligence on all potential partners and their business models.”
It was also mentioned that “subject to League approval, Clubs may now accept advertising (without the use of club marks and logos, unless in connection with a League NFT deal) for NFTs and NFT companies.”
In contrast to the 20-year agreement FTX negotiated with the Los Angeles Staples Center, the NFL’s chief of consumer products, Joe Ruggiero, stated that the deals with crypto startups will not last longer than three years, allowing for long-term flexibility.
He further added: “We’re extremely bullish on blockchain technology. We think it has a lot of potential to really shape innovation, shape fan engagement over the course of the coming decade. Everything is changing so quickly – we all have to be looking at the next areas of innovation. So we’re spending a lot of time looking at where the future may go.”