However, things have seemingly taken a rather radical turn with the latest news offering that WAGMI United, a crypto-backed DAO (decentralised autonomous organization), has brought together an ownership group with a view to buy a major English football league club. As of now, the WAGMI investor group, made up of prominent crypto enthusiasts, NFT collectors and sports executives, is eyeing to purchase full ownership of League Two club Bradford City AFC.
Bradford City owner Stefan Rapp has admitted to receiving the offer, although adding that negotiations are yet to reach an advanced stage and nothing is finalized at this stage. Be that as it may, according to informed sources, WAGMI is serious about the investment and even if the negotiations with Bradford fall through, they will advance their proposal to another club of the same stature.
TheWAGMI ownership group has a well-thought out plan in place as to how to run their own club. For starters, the group believes that although the investor group includes some big names, the success of the venture won't depend solely on the pocketbooks of the investors. Instead, the press release claims that the 'community-powered, digital-first approach' of WAGMI will be able to provide 'valuable new fundings streams' for the club and will increase its budget to levels rarely seen by a football club of this size.
Of course, to what extent these claims will be realized, it remains to be seen. However, when we take into account the fact that the WAGMI group of investors includes names like Gary Vaynerchuk as well as prominent sports execs like Daryl Morey, there is no questioning the fact that WAGMI sure means business here!
It All Started With Liga MX, When Al Tylis of New York Pioneered The Idea
While NFTs are all set to make such a huge splash in the European football scene, back in North America, many are wondering what sort of influence this English Football deal will have on North American soccer. The question becomes all the more pertinent since prior to WAGMI United's offer, the most talked about NFT transaction in football was Al Tylis' selling of 1% ownership stake in the Liga MX team Club Necaxa using NFT and blockchain technology. The stake was sold at the $1.3 million reserve price and the club received as many as 12 bids for the offered transaction.
Al Tylis will probably again play a major role going into the future as others look to Albert Tylis for advice. The owner of the NorthStar Realty and NorthStar Asset Management was among the first to recognize the huge investment potential that Liga MX had, given that in the United States, the Mexican league had a larger viewership than that of English Premier League and MLS combined. Accordingly, he brought together a start-studded investment team (including names like Mesut Ozil, Justin Verlander, Shawn Marlon, Richard Hamilton, Victor Oladipo, Bode Miller, Eva Longoria and Kate Upton) to buy 50% ownership of Necaxa.
Tylis was also the brain behind the club's decision to sell the 1% stake via NFT. There are opportunities galore when it comes to using many different types of NFTs as new ways to monetize engagement. He maintains that NFTs can help club owners create many different layers of rights and ownerships and opportunities to engage (through discounted stores; through providing different levels of access to the club such as locker room access, ticket access, access to the players; and so on). Theoretically, what is doable in the universe of blockchain is 'infinite', Tylis claims.
But taking full ownership of a club using NFTs alone, much in the manner of what WAGMI is planning to do? If one were to put faith in Tylis' enthusiasm for crypto and NFT and on the forward-thinking nature of leaders like him...well, that, too, may soon become a reality for Liga MX as well.
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