The top prize for individual footballers, the Ballon d’Or, this year’s winners will also receive digital tokens in addition to their sparkling trophy, the organisers informed AFP on Thursday.
The Equipe media group’s France-based award has honoured the best players of the beautiful game for 66 years, bestowing upon them fame throughout the world and a trophy in the form of a golden football.
Equipe is attempting to enter the cryptocurrency market this year, delivering a variety of digital tokens (NFTs) free to the winners while selling hundreds more to the general public.
NFT initiatives abound in sport as organisers, organisations, and athletes look to capitalise on their notoriety.
On a blockchain, a digital ledger that contains data about digital assets, the tokens are bits of computer code.
They may be connected to a work of art, a character from a video game, or an actual thing, like with the Ballon d’Or. NFTs are typically purchased with the intention of reselling them at a profit because of their alleged collectability and scarcity.
But this year has been a disaster for the entire crypto industry, with the value of currencies and other assets like NFTs plummeting.
However, according to Equipe, the Ballon d’Or NFTs were a part of a longer-term plan.
This first collection will be followed by others such as the Equipe and Amaury group and more generally the Ballon d’Or.
aim to sustainably project themselves into the web3 era, the new era of the decentralised internet,” according to the media group.
Equipe announced that it would auction three NFTs, each of which would grant its user “VIP access” to the awards ceremony on October 17 and hundreds more tickets to the after-party.
The men’s prize is heavily favoured to go to France and Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema this year.
He appropriately released his own NFT collection earlier this year.