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Brasil’s Avaí becomes first football club to launch its own cryptocurrency

By Paul Nicholson

September 12 – Brasileiro Série B football club Avaí Futebol Clube has become the first football club to launch its own cryptocurrency with in Initial Coin Offering (ICO) targeting a $20 million capital raise.

Partnered with blockchain technology specialists SportyCo and football investment specialist Blackbridge Sports, the Avaí FC Token will go on sale October 3 priced $1 with the sale period lasting for a month.

“Our goal is to raise $20.46 million US dollars, with a minimum cap of 8 million dollars. A maximum of 20.46 million tokens (93%) valued at $1 will be available for purchase in the Crowdsale. A maximum of 1,540,000 AVAI Tokens (7%) will be retained by Avai FC,” said the club.

Working with SportyCo, the club will develop an online ecosystem for earning and spending the AVAI token. Marko Filej, SportyCo’s co-founder, said: “With this initial coin offering we are opening a new chapter in football and the sports industry in general…in the beginning token holders will be able to purchase merchandise, tickets and unique experiences with the token. In the future this will be upgraded.”

The token will be listed on several cryptocurrency exchanges for those who buy the token for trading. However, should the trading value of the AVAI token drop the club said it “will always provide a valuable experience or service for token holders wishing to participate.”

For Avaí the attraction of the crypocurrency is to raise new money that will support the club’s promotion push to Brazil’s top tier Série A, provide financial stability and contribute to the goal of qualification for the Copa Libertadores.

Francisco José Battistotti, President of Avaí Futebol Clube, said: “With our ICO, we are actively targeting a global football fan base, while engaging all Avaí FC in Florianópolis and Brazil, working together towards our goal – to become a stable member of Brazil’s Série A and qualify for the Copa Libertadores. We are delighted to do so in partnership with SportyCo and be the first sports company to do an initial coin offering, paving the way for other clubs all over the world to approach financing their sporting activities in this novel way.”

If the crowdsale does not reach the $8 million threshold, fiunds will behanded back to buyers at the end of the process. If the sale achieves more than £8 million but is short of the $20 million target, unsold tokens will be ‘burned’, meaning that they will not be available to the club or come back on sale. Only tokens actually bought by investors will be available after the end of the ICO, with about 7% available to the club for promotions and bonuses.

“Money raised from the crowdsale will go straight into club infrastructure which will stay with the club forever,” said Filej.

Based in Florianopolis, Avaí was founded in 1923 and has won a number of Catarina state championships as well as having spells in the Brazil’s Serie A. The club owns its 17,800 capacity stadium and according to the Ibupe Repucon Report (2017) was the country’s 22nd most valuable brand (by media value).

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