Blockchain is not only used in the financial sphere. We already knew this with large retailers who rely on this technology to improve product traceability. But the blockchain is also beginning to penetrate the world of sport, and in particular football. Proof of this is today with the launch of the Paris Saint-Germain virtual currency to allow supporters of the capital club to participate in the life of the club.
In this context, the current leader of the French championship joined forces in September 2018 with the Socios.com platform of the Maltese start-up Chiliz, owned by the Mediarex group. The latter allows since Tuesday to buy online tokens (tokens), baptized “$PSG” for the occasion, via the virtual currency Chiliz ($CHZ). Thanks to it, PSG supporters can afford “Fan Tokens”, i.e. fully fungible digital assets stored in the Chiliz blockchain, to earn the right to participate in most decisions. of the club.
20 million tokens issued to create a community of “socios”
Of course, it is not a question of giving Parisian supporters the same powers as the “socios” of FC Barcelona or Real Madrid, who really hold a small part of their favorite club. Like the operation of an association, a union or a political party, the “socios” really weigh on the decisions of the club. This title also gives them the right to elect the president of the club and to participate in other important elections in the life of the club. A way for these particular supporters to guide the governance of their club and change course if necessary. The icing on the cake, the “socios” are given a place in the stadium.
In the case of PSG, it is therefore not a question of having Parisian supporters vote to dub or replace Nasser al-Khelaïfi, the current president of the club, or of giving them a place at the Parc des Princes in exchange for a token, but of take part in surveys on leaner decisions. For example, these digital “socios” will be able to vote to choose the music for players entering the Parc des Princes and that played during each goal scored, or the message written on the bus during a trip to rival OM history of PSG. They will also be able to see their loyalty rewarded with a VIP experience during a match or a meeting with the players. Note that it is only the club that decides on the question asked and the answers offered. However, PSG have made a commitment to Socios.com to respect the outcome of the polls.
A new image of the supporter
In total, 20 million tokens, at 2 euros each, are put on the market. However, the fluctuation in the price of the Chiliz cryptocurrency, like Bitcoin or Ether, could well make Parisian supporters go through all the emotions. Thus, a qualification for the last four of the Champions League could push up the price of virtual currency, while a series of defeats could make it plunge. Logically, the more tokens a fan holds, the more influence they will have on a vote. To avoid drifts, a ceiling has however been set.
Beyond involving more French fans of PSG , this device, which is more akin to a loyalty program than an offer to become a shareholder of the club, also aims to engage Paris supporters around the world. . In the eyes of Alexandre Dreyfus , head of the Socios.com platform , we are witnessing a redefinition of the image of the supporter. “ A fan is no longer categorized only as a supporter who lives in the city of his favorite club and goes to the stadium. We must also accept that fans were born in Thailand and Japan, and are as much supporters as those who live in the city of the club in question , ”he says at our microphone.
You can find his full interview here:
Clubs are global lifestyle brands
The partnership between PSG and Socios.com extends over five years, the time to study for the club the contributions of this cryptocurrency in its income. ” This revolutionary technology will have a significant impact on the club’s overall commercial strategy and on the way we interact with our fans ,” said Marc Armstrong, director of sponsorship for Paris Saint-Germain, who spent time in the NBA, at the time of the press release. announcement of the collaboration with the Alexandre Dreyfus platform .
Little by little, football clubs, like artists in the music industry, are becoming real lifestyle brands, with derivative products and programs to reward the loyalty of their fans around the world. The goal is above all to develop a sense of belonging. PSG ‘s virtual currency is part of this trend. Other football clubs have also called on Socios.com to take a similar approach, such as Juventus Turin, AS Roma, Atlético Madrid and Galatasaray. The platform is aiming for 1 million users by the end of the year. The blockchain offensive in football is just beginning.