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New Balance, the worldwide manufacturer of sports apparel, has entered into a partnership with Cardano to use its blockchain for product authentication services.
In an article published yesterday, Charles Hoskinson, the chief executive of blockchain development firm IOHK, announced that New Balance would be making use of the Cardano blockchain going forward to enable customers to verify the origins of several products in its line.
The initiative will definitely be useful in building trust between New Balance and its customers, particularly in a world where counterfeit products seem to be destroying the legitimate goods market.
Cardano blockchain, but no ADA
Hoskinson reportedly made a formal announcement of the program while attending the 2nd-anniversary event of the cryptocurrency firm at the Cardano Summit in Plovdiv, Bulgaria. While the two firms are working on a global rollout of the program, Hoskinson also confirmed that the current plan doesn’t include the use of the Cardano token during the pilot.
Crypto and the sports industry
Of course, this isn’t the first time that a name in the sports and entertainment industry will be affiliated with a cryptocurrency firm. It’s the latest in a multifaceted set of collaborations between cryptocurrencies, crypto firms, and organizations within the sports industry.
Earlier this month, Spencer Dinwiddie, a player for the Brooklyn Nets of the National Basketball Association, attempted to tokenize his contract with the team.
Dinwiddie got a three-year extension on his contract with the Nets earlier this year, which was worth a collective $34 million. According to a report by Fox Business, the player was looking to sell digital tokens tied to the contract, where investors will be able to get principals on their interest.
His attempt was, however, rebuffed by the NBA as the initiative would have been a violation of the collective bargaining agreement between players and the association.
According to Forbes, a statement to that effect read, “According to recent reports, Spencer Dinwiddie intends to sell investors a ‘tokenized security’ that will be backed by his player contract. The described arrangement is prohibited by the C.B.A., which provides that ‘no player shall assign or otherwise transfer to any third party his right to receive compensation from the team under his uniform player contract.’”
In addition to Dinwiddie and his contract situation, the Dallas Mavericks, another team in the NBA, announced in August that they would be accepting Bitcoin as a means of payment for franchise merchandise and tickets to their matches. In doing so, the Mavs became only the second team in the NBA to make such a move, following the Sacramento Kings in 2014.
That same month, the NBA and the National Basketball Players Association (an affiliate of the league which comprises of its players), partnered with Dapper Labs to launch a crypto collectibles game. Per reports, fans will be able to get live footage of NBA games, which will now be used in some capacity to build competing rosters in the game.