- Sportemon Go requests the amicable termination of the partnership agreements
- Hibernian had reduced its partnership and offered refunds
SportemonGo, a cryptocurrency company that had partnerships with Scottish Professional Football League (SPFL) teams Rangers and Hibernian, as well as Premier League football player endorsements, has gone out of business.
Athleticism notes that the value of Sportemon Go’s “SGOX” token launched in July last year before crashing in the fall.
Promotional social media posts by Andy Robertson, Luke Shaw, and Callum Hudson-Odoi helped boost token value in October, but fans eager to benefit from the increased awareness were left out after early adopters cashed out, which caused the value of the token to plummet.
Sportemon Go social media accounts were deleted on 1st May before reappearing with a message confirming his intention to withdraw from the market.
‘The SGOX token has ceased trading. The community voted unanimously to redeem SGOX for an L1TF token,” read the post, indicating that the owners would be offered some sort of compensation in the form of another cryptocurrency.
He added that assets containing his partners’ intellectual property were being removed or terminated and that he was working on “amicable” termination agreements.
Rangers and Hibernian had planned to offer other blockchain-based digital products as part of their sponsorship deals, but nothing substantial ever really emerged. Hibernian said it did due diligence before signing its deal and scaled down its business with Sportemon Go after learning of its struggles. He added that he is refunding any fan who has purchased Hibernian Fan Tokens, which have not yet been traded on an open market.
However, there will be no compensation for fans who have been encouraged to invest in SGOX.
Proponents of blockchain-based technology in sports point to potential revenue, fan engagement and operational opportunities, but this latest installment further highlights the dangers of clubs and players partnering with blockchain companies. blockchain without understanding their responsibilities to fans and their reputation.
Several sports teams and federations have signed sponsorship deals with cryptocurrency companies, launched fan tokens and released NFT collections, but have come under fire for seeking to exploit fandom to increase revenue rather than offering real benefits to supporters.
English Premier League team Arsenal saw club advertisements promoting fan tokens are prohibited for taking advantage of consumers’ inexperience with crypto-assets and others have been accused of not doing enough research before accepting cryptocurrency referrals.
Barcelona launched a fan token last year but were forced to cancel an NFT partnership with Ownix after a consultant linked to the firm was arrested, while Manchester City suspended a partnership with 3Key after only a week following questions about the legitimacy of the company. The liquidation of Iqoniq earlier this year potentially left several sports organizations out.