MLB Going Big in NFT Space: NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, are becoming a significant part of the sports industry. An NFT is part of the Ethereum blockchain, making it a cryptocurrency like Bitcoin. However, an NFT is non-fungible, unlike Bitcoin, which can be exchanged for a currency of equal value.
The most important thing to know about an NFT is that it can be anything digital, like music or art. The current excitement in sports is NFT art. A Muhammad Ali NFT is expected to go for $100,000 in auction.
Major League Baseball is now starting to go big in the NFT space to take advantage of the crypto craze. The latest NFT venture is thanks to Fanatics Chairman Michael Rubin and his new company, Candy Digital.
MLB Getting Involved in NFT Space
Candy Digital and MLB all agreed to a multiyear licensing deal for non-fungible tokens. The first token in the collection will be an NFT to commemorate Lou Gehrig, who passed from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, which impacts the nervous system.
The illness has been given the term Lou Gehrig’s Disease since he contracted the disease. Major League Baseball honored Gehrig to promote to find a cure for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis for the first time on June 2nd.
The league-wide event will occur every year, and the initial NFT will be used to raise money for charity. The non-fungible token will depict Gehrig’s “Luckiest Man” speech.
MLB will benefit from primary and secondary sales of its assets. Candy Digital will earn revenue from primary sales of MLB assets and NFT trading fees.
All NFTs are unique since they are part of the Ethereum blockchain. The plan between Candy Digital and MLB is for the company to make legends like Babe Ruth and Jackie Robinson into NFTs for sale to the public.
The Partnership Between MLB and Candy Digital
The NFT craze is accelerating at a rapid pace currently. The value of cryptocurrencies has never been higher, making now a perfect time for MLB and Candy Digital to craft their agreement.
MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred spoke about his excitement to be working with Candy Digital.
“From trading cards to autographed balls, baseball fans have demonstrated their passion for the sport and its players through collectibles for decades. In working with Candy Digital to offer NFTs to MLB fans, we’re delivering an exciting new addition to the robust baseball collectible market.”
Candy Digital, which is operated by Fanatics, was founded by a multitude of entrepreneurs. The list includes Fanatics Chairman Michael Rubin, who also owns a portion of the Philadelphia 76ers.
The other founder is Mike Novogratz, who started the crypto merchant bank Galaxy Digital. VaynerMedia CEO Gary Vaynerchuk will serve as a board member and advisor for Candy Digital, which should help the company grow drastically.
Candy Digital will start in the sports world while producing NFTs, but there are plans to expand into entertainment and music. NBA Top Shots NFTs are the gold standard in the sports world, generating $12.8 million in revenue in 2018.
Although, this project with Candy Digital and MLB is expected to be very successful.
Tanner Kern is a writer for Knup Sports and the Sports 2.0 Network. He is the host of Between the Lines, the official show of Baseball Spotlight, and the main contributor for the website. Connect with Tanner on IG @tannerkern and Twitter @tannerkern_.