New Memo Reveals Direct Crypto Promotion for NFL Teams Still Banned

Varuni Trivedi
Updated: Mar 23, 2022, 07:43 UTC

Amid rising interest in crypto, NFTs, and the Metaverse by sports fans, NFL has reconsidered its permission for sponsorships by crypto firms.

FXEmpire, NFL, Crypto

Key Insights:

  • NFL has granted teams limited permission to seek blockchain sponsorships in a recently released memo.
  • This could further aid the blossoming relationship between crypto and sports.
  • However, direct promotions are still banned.

The connection between blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies has been pretty tight of late. Recently, the National Football League granted teams limited permission to seek blockchain sponsorships, a partial reversal from last year.

Blockchain Sponsorships for Sports

Amid growing demand from fans and athletes for blockchain-backed projects, NFL has gone back on its words. In a memo issued Tuesday, the league said it has decided to allow ‘promotional relationships without undertaking excessive regulator or brand risk.’

After it completed an evaluation of the technology, NFL gave the necessary permissions. However, they are still subject to the NFL’s approval, excluding stadium signage.

Furthermore, the memo states that restrictions remain for specific cryptocurrencies and fan tokens. Fans and users can exchange crypto and fan tokens for merchandise and experiences.

Reportedly, the memo is issued by Renie Anderson, NFL’s Chief Revenue Officer, and Brian Rolapp, the league’s Chief Media and Business Officer.

The note made it clear that clubs will continue to be prohibited from directly promoting cryptocurrency despite the permissions for sponsorships.

The memo further read,

“In this evolving regulatory environment, it remains essential that we proceed carefully when evaluating potential commercial opportunities involving blockchain technologies and conduct appropriate diligence on all potential partners and their business models.”

NFL’s decision comes soon after its recent lobbying push related to blockchain technology. In February, NFL had lobbied the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on ‘issues related to blockchain technology.’

Notably, the league has also lobbied the White House and the departments of Justice and Commerce.

Sports and Crypto Amalgamation

The seismic shift in demand for NFTs and interest in the Metaverse has pushed celebrities, athletes, and artists into the space. Notably, there has been a considerable rise in sports sponsorships by crypto organizations.

Crypto exchanges have targeted sports players, teams, and sports events to build brand awareness. As reported by FXEmpire, 4-time Grand Slam tennis champion Naomi Osaka followed in the footsteps of NFL star Tom Brady to become an FTX Ambassador on March 21.

In a similar vein, French football club Paris Saint-Germain recently entered the metaverse space, further integrating the crypto market with sports. Interestingly, cryptocurrency exchanges, NFTs, and sports have had a blossoming relationship this year.

About the Author

A Journalism post-graduate with a keen interest in emerging markets across South East Asia, Varuni’s interest lies in the Blockchain technology. As a financial journalist, she covers metric and data-driven stories with a tinge of commentary, and strongly believes in HODLing.

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