The project, which Fiorentina FC says is the first of its kind for a soccer club, was initially introduced as a trial last month, where football jerseys worn during games were fitted with a distinct chip and tied to blockchain encryption to verify authenticity.
Additional developments for the jersey authentication project will be rolled out during the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas later this month.
Joe Barone, Fiorentina general manager, remarked:
“The Genuino solution offers a unique product and service that will allow us to certify and authenticate the sweaters of our members.”
The Genuino certification blockchain module tracks the consecutive ownership transfers of a jersey to eradicate counterfeiting and connect the team’s brand with its fan base through value merchandise.
IOTA Blockchain Tech Finding its way into Sports
According to Eleonora Mulas, CEO, Genuino, the certification prototype that integrates innovative technologies such as IoT, decentralized applications and smart contracts, will help his startup be on the frontline in the sports business innovation.
Although the shirt prototype is a first for a football club, other sports teams have been exploiting blockchain tech to tap into the digital collectibles market.
For instance, Arsenal and Real Madrid linked up with Fantastec in 2019 to offer fans an innovative app that allows them to own and trade club-specific digital collectibles.
Fantastec offers its SWAP app to bring supporters exclusive video content, original autographs from their favorite players, or collectible cards that can be exchanged.
Blockchain-based Fan Engagement Platforms
Another innovative blockchain use case in sports is the blockchain-based fan engagement and rewards platform. The app can award users digital assets that let them engage in certain polls.
The more fans interact with the club through the app, the more rewards they can earn, competing for once-in-a-lifetime experiences, and gaining access to exclusive merchandise, games, and leaderboards.
In September 2019, Atletico Madrid announced a partnership with Chiliz, joining the likes of Paris Saint-Germain, Roma, and West Ham on the blockchain-based fan engagement and rewards platform.