Although the football season has ended, the English Premier League is kicking off a new endeavor by stepping into the virtual realm to reach out to fans through non-fungible tokens or NFTs and the metaverse.
The English Premier League is the top-flight league for English football and the latest sports entity to dive into the digital world, filing two patent applications with the US Patent and Trademark Office.
The League is one of the most-watched sports leagues in the world, and on June 1, trademark applications for a crowned lion with a three-quarter view and a love cup trophy with lions on each handle and a crown on top were filed with the USPTO.
Trademark attorney Michael Kondoudis announced on Twitter two days ago that the English Premier League would be arriving into the metaverse.
“The English Premier League is usually viewed by over 1 billion people, thus, the brand’s value is enormous,” Kondoudis clarified in a press statement. “These filings are a reasonable move towards protecting the brand in today’s economy, which incorporates virtual and crypto aspects, as well as tomorrow’s virtual economy in the metaverse.”
NFTs have grown popular among sports fans, prompting clubs to embrace crypto assets and blockchain technology.
The trademark attorney noted that the shift in the crypto market represents an awareness from sports companies that they need to be protected in the metaverse.
“We expect the number of trademark filings from the professional sports sector for crypto and virtual products and services to increase in the next 12 months as brands come to appreciate the need for protection in the metaverse.”
Although the crypto market crash led to moderate demand for cryptocurrencies and NFTs, sales remained on track to surpass the $20 billion record in 2021.
Despite the League’s dive into the crypto world, other clubs have already started penetrating the metaverse.
Premier League champions Manchester City have been utilizing virtual reality professionals from Sony to build the world’s first football stadium in the metaverse.
French league champions Paris Saint-Germain submitted trademark applications earlier in March for NFT-backed media like crypto wallets, managing cryptocurrency transactions, virtual clothes, and electronics.