Regulator May Ban La Liga Football Clubs’ Crypto Sponsorship Deals
One of Spain’s top financial regulators has warned top-tier professional football clubs in the country that their sponsorship deals – including many made with cryptocurrency-related companies – could be “toxic.”
Sports newspaper AS says it has seen a report compiled by the regulatory National Securities Market Commission (CNMV), which calls out a number of La Liga (the men's top professional football division of the Spanish football league system) clubs for possible violations. The regulator says that it could be forced to act – and “put restrictions on La Liga club advertising.”
The media report claims that two clubs, in particular, are under the spotlight – namely Real Betis, whose main shirt sponsor is easyMarkets (which offers crypto trading and crypto CFDs (contracts for differences), and Atlético Madrid, whose shirt sponsor is Plus500, another company that offers crypto trading services.
The CNMV has not singled out crypto trading platforms exclusively, but it has stated that it may look to outlaw sponsorship deals with crypto exchanges and brokerages – as well as online gambling, forex, CFD, stocks and binary options platforms.
The regulator believes that football sponsorship deals involving “complex financial products” could be considered “toxic advertising.”
A large number of La Liga teams have signed sponsorship deals with crypto firms and exchanges in recent years, and although the CNMV’s primary focus appears to be shirt sponsors, the report also makes mention of a range of sponsorship deals involving La Liga club and crypto and financial products-related companies.
Sponsorship deals have already seen La Liga players participate in advertising and marketing events for crypto and other financial services providers, with some platforms offering discounts for fans.
Meanwhile, in nearby Italy, Serie A champions Juventus have co-launched a line of Ethereum-powered digital collectibles on a blockchain platform. The collectibles have been released in conjunction with blockchain provider Sorare, which also has collaboration deals in place with the aforementioned Atlético Madrid, as well as Italy’s AS Roma and Portugal’s Porto.