This Footballing Powerhouse Finds a New Way to Dip into Crypto
Ukrainian footballing powerhouse Shakhtar Donetsk looks set to become the latest major European club to explore cryptocurrency-related business growth.
Earlier this month, the club signed a partnership deal with Israeli firm Hype Sports Innovation, a firm that claims to be the world's largest accelerator of sports-related startups.
On September 24, the club issued an open call for applications, saying it was willing to listen to business proposals from startups involved in a range of industries, including “crypto in sport.” Shakhtar says it will accept applications until mid-November this year.
Calling sports tech startups! Geography is not a problem!— FC SHAKHTAR ENGLISH (@FCShakhtar_eng) September 24, 2018
Join us for the first sports tech accelerator in Ukraine! Organized by FC Shakhtar & @Hype_SI!
Apply here: https://t.co/tUFjaT2JOV pic.twitter.com/KM6U8V3sxQ
The club says it will help ensure the startups it selects “receive mentorship from world sports tech leaders and internationally renowned brands,” as well as receiving “global prospects and opportunities to scale up their businesses.”
Shakhtar are one of the most successful football teams in the Eastern Europe and the CIS. The club are Champions League regulars, won the UEFA Cup in 2009, have won the Ukrainian Premier league 11 times and currently sit atop of their domestic league table.
The news comes hot on the heels of another cryptocurrency-related announcement from one of Shakhtar’s UEFA Champions League rivals – Juventus. The Italian club yesterday became the latest European giant to announce the launch of a fan token with Malta-based cryptocurrency outfit Chiliz, the operator of Socios.com.
The move was a second major coup for Socios.com, who earlier this month struck a deal with the world’s richest club, Paris Saint-Germain (PSG). PSG are now set to launch their own fan token in spring next year.
Moreover, digital token-based fundraising could also become a valuable new method of fundraising for small football clubs who struggle to compete with their larger competitors as they do not have the funds to expand their youth academies, improve their stadiums and pay for high-quality players and coaches.