GLEO on the website of Shucangbao

Beijing’s football club issues NFTs ahead of virtual stadium

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Beijing Guoan Football Club, a professional soccer team competing in the Chinese Super League (CSL), launched GLEO on Sunday, a collection of non-fungible tokens (NFT) that can be used as avatars in the club’s virtual stadium scheduled to go live next year. 

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Fast facts

  • The former CSL champion kicked off a 10-day lottery over the weekend to distribute 10,000 free NFTs to the winners. The football club intends to mint more NFTs, locally referred to as “digital collectibles,” in the future, the club said on its official WeChat account on Tuesday. 
  • The NFTs were issued on China Mobile’s Shucangbao, a digital collectibles platform on the state-owned telecommunications giant’s Zhong Yi Chain blockchain. China Mobile is a founding member of the Blockchain-based Service Network, a blockchain infrastructure backed by the state. 
  • Some of the world’s top football clubs, including FC Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain, have launched collectibles and fan tokens to enhance interactions with their supporters. Barcelona’s first NFT was sold for US$693,000 at a Sotheby’s auction last July.  
  • Blockchain interest in sports extends beyond football, with NBA Top Shot, a collection of NFTs containing basketball video highlights from the National Basketball Association, ranking seventh in all-time sales, according to CryptoSlam.
  • Although numerous businesses in China have started tapping into NFT and metaverse-related products, the country’s market regulator on Tuesday warned of illegal fundraising activities related to the blockchain-based concepts.

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