UFC announced plans to launch its own blockchain-based fan token with partner Chiliz Tuesday. Up to 20 million of the $UFC tokens will go on sale at Socios.com, offering holders access to a variety of perks.
The announcement comes as sports brands continue to explore crypto offerings. UFC itself has a deal with NBA Top Shot maker Dapper Labs to sell its own digital collectibles. The potential benefits for $UFC owners range from voting on production elements to getting exclusive merchandise. The UFC token is scheduled to launch in June. Chiliz, which uses blockchain tech to help brands engage fans, has more than 20 other property partners, including soccer clubs like FC Barcelona and Manchester City.
The Professional Fighters League launched its own token with Chiliz in April, selling 300,000 in 10 minutes at $2 each. $PFL was trading at $3.71 Tuesday, according to FanTokenCenter.com. The league let token holders decide which fight should be the “People’s Main Event” for its April 23 event.
“We are continually looking for ways to increase engagement with our fans,” UFC SVP of global consumer products Tracey Bleczinski said in a statement. “UFC has more than 625 million fans around the world, and Fan Tokens are a unique way to connect with them through a compelling, authentic product that brings them closer to UFC and gives them influence, while also rewarding their passion for the sport.”
Chiliz, based in Malta, previously announced a $50 million expansion for its U.S. operations. The company has also been talking with Formula One and e-sports teams, according to Reuters.
“Socios.com and Fan Tokens will empower UFC to connect with its global following like never before,” Chiliz and Socios.com CEO Alexandre Dreyfus said in a statement. “By giving fans around the world the ability to influence their favorite teams and sports, we are transforming what it means to be a fan.”