You might not be able to go and watch a live match just yet, but that doesn’t mean things aren’t looking up in the world of soccer. A French blockchain startup, Sorare, has raised $50 million in a Series A funding round.
Sorare was founded in 2018 with the idea that fans could use non-fungible tokens created on the Ethereum blockchain and access a collective fantasy football experience. The digital collectibles platform allows users to manage their players and win prizes.
As well as enhanced online experiences, Sorare will use the funding to onboard the 20 best football leagues and launch a mobile application.
In a blog post, Sorare’s co-founder Nicolas Julia said:
“These funds will serve to delight our current and future community. Clubs, footballers and fans are at the heart of the game. We’re designing an experience where fans can celebrate, share, and live football moments at a deeper connection. We’re making fantasy football a reality.”
Major Investors Back Soccer Startup
Investment heavyweight Benchmark, best known for backing tech giants such as Twitter and Uber, led the funding round alongside major investor Accel Partners, which has interests in Spotify and Facebook.
Andrei Brasoveanu, a Partner at Accel, commented:
“Sitting at the intersection of fantasy football and sports collectibles, Sorare is revolutionizing the way fans across the world engage with and enjoy sports. In just a year, Sorare has built an incredible viral community and secured partnerships with more than 130 football clubs, including five European Champions.”
As more of life becomes digital, many companies have reacted by trying to recreate more meaningful fan experiences at home, providing the sense of collective exhilaration you would get at a real match.
Sorare has plenty of competition in the blockchain gaming space, joining other companies such as token trading startup Socios and fan experience company Fantastec. Canada’s Dapper Labs, a gaming platform built on the Flow blockchain, had over $200 million in transactions in the past 30 days following a lot of hype surrounding its NBA partnership.
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