DraftKings Launches NFT Marketplace With Tom Brady’s Autograph
DraftKings is getting into sports NFTs with curated releases from Autograph, which was co-founded by U.S. football star Tom Brady.
Shares of DraftKings (DKNG) - Get Report jumped on Wednesday after the sports gambling platform unveiled plans to cash in on the nonfungible-token craze by launching DraftKings Marketplace.
The marketplace will provide access to curated NFT releases and facilitate secondary-market transactions.
“The NFT boom has reinvented the collectibles industry and driven excitement to early-adopting audiences worldwide — including the DraftKings community,” Matt Kalish, co-founder and president of the Boston company, said in a statement.
DraftKings shares at last check were 4.1% higher at $47.72.
DraftKings is teaming with Autograph, the NFT platform co-founded by National Football League star Tom Brady, to offer its first drops.
The initial offering, called the Pre-Season Access collection, will showcase NFTs from Autograph’s athletes roster, which includes Tiger Woods, Wayne Gretzky, Derek Jeter, Naomi Osaka and Tony Hawk.
Autograph’s advisory board will help design custom NFTs exclusively for DraftKings Marketplace drops. Offerings will begin rolling out later this summer.
DraftKings Marketplace will be the exclusive purveyor of sports NFTs from Autograph, but the company says the collaboration could eventually branch out into entertainment, lifestyle and culture NFTs.
“As the world becomes more comfortable with digital ownership and collection, we see an incredible opportunity to bring users high-quality and personalized content from their favorite athletes, artists and franchises,'' Autograph Chief Executive Dillon Rosenblatt said. Autograph is based in Los Angeles.
Why DraftKings Stock Surged on Wednesday
Shares of DraftKings (NASDAQ:DKNG) climbed sharply higher on Wednesday, surging as much as 6.5% early in the session. As of 12:28 p.m. EDT, the stock was trading up 5.9%.
The online betting and fantasy sports company surged on news it had inked a deal with non-fungible token (NFT) platform Autograph to launch a marketplace for digital, collectible content.
DraftKings Marketplace will be the exclusive purveyor of officially licensed digital sports collectibles offered by Autograph, which was co-founded by NFL quarterback Tom Brady. DraftKings will also host curated releases of digital sports memorabilia, as well as act as a facilitator for the secondhand market. Sports aficionados will be able to buy, sell, and trade their virtual collectibles using a new or existing DraftKings account.
Autograph boasts a laundry list of high-profile professional athletes including Tiger Woods, Wayne Gretzky, Derek Jeter, and Naomi Osaka.
NFTs have been all the rage lately, and can represent ownership of any virtual asset, including digital artwork, music, or literature. Ownership of these NTFs is tracked using blockchain, the same technology that underpins cryptocurrency. Each NFT is unique and can have only one owner.
One of the most high-profile examples took place earlier this year. Mike Winkelmann, known professionally as digital artist Beeple, sold a digital work of art via Christie’s auction house for a whopping $69 million.
What constitutes a NFT varies widely, however. Jack Dorsey, the co-founder and CEO of Twitter, sold the digital rights to his first tweet on the platform for roughly $2.9 million.
With interest in NFTs surging, DraftKings could attract a host of new users to its platform.
DKNG Stock: 4 Things We Know About Plans for a DraftKings NFT Marketplace
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