Arsenal Football Club has announced a partnership with sports technology innovator Fantastec to provide fans with a new app to own and trade genuine digital Arsenal collectibles.
It builds on a concept first seen in the US last year, where a partnership between Major League Baseball and Lucid Sight has been offering fans the chance to trade digital baseball collectibles via a blockchain-based platform.
The Fantastec SWAP platform works in a similar way, using blockchain technology to allow fans to discover, collect and swap officially licensed Arsenal collectibles through a free-to-download football game.
Fans can unlock digital player profiles which include original video content from Arsenal’s men’s and women’s teams as well as authentic player autographs that they can swap safely and securely online with other worldwide fans.
“Fantastec SWAP is a game-changer for international football fans as well the sports collectibles industry,” commented Simon Woollard Product Partner at Fantastec.
“The majority of sports fans are mobile-first and geographically distanced from their favourite teams.
"Fantastec has developed a approach for fans to engage in more valuable relationships with the teams and players they love, rewarding their activity in the app, and empowering them to own a genuine share of a club’s history - timestamped and safely protected on the blockchain.”
“We are fortunate to be working with such a forward-thinking club like Arsenal who recognise the value in better connecting with their global fans, while also providing a safe platform for global fans to connect and engage with each other.”
Arsenal is the first team to be announced on the Fantastec SWAP app, with more football clubs from La Liga, Bundesliga and other top-tier global leagues to follow.
Peter Silverstone, Arsenal’s Commercial Director, said: “As football fans, many of us remember collecting and swapping player cards with friends.
"This initiative with Fantastec SWAP brings that concept into today’s digital world and gives our fans access to unique Arsenal collectibles and content wherever they are in the world.”
Fantastec SWAP encourages fans to build their squad collections by purchasing in-app team packs, and by swapping freely with other fans all over the world.
The blockchain-powered platform also offers social network-like features, enabling fans to connect and swap their collectibles with the same confidence and trust they would have if they were interacting physically.