Digital& NFT

NFT Push Expands with DraftKings and Tom Brady’s Autograph NFT Platform

The world of cryptocurrency and digitization has seen many ups and downs. Notable records have been followed by major sell-offs, followed by volatility and recoveries. One aspect which remains up for debate is the sector of non-fungible tokens. These NFTs remain a mystery to many of even the most astute investors and collectors alike, and many crypto investors and collectibles investors have so far steered clear of NFTs.

So what happens when you mix the top sports betting player with the world of NFTs? This is where DraftKings comes into play, along with its cadre of what the company has said is over 5 million players. This also ties in the NFT platform that was co-founded by Tom Brady. Other founding partners of Autograph include Tiger Woods, Naomi Osaka, Derek Jeter, Wayne Gretzky, Tony Hawk and Lionsgate. It should further be noted that Jason Robins, DraftKings’ co-founder and CEO, is on the board of advisors of Autograph.

The role of Collectors Dashboard is to evaluate collectibles as an alternative asset class. This is agnostic of types of collectibles in coins, stamps, sports collectibles, comic books, fine art and even wine and whisky. This evaluation is also handled knowing that some collectibles will prove to be great investments and some will prove to be busts. Despite some risks and controversy of NFTs, this newer class of collectibles has undeniably garnered its share of attention in sports and art.

Collectibles can now cost multiple times that of a typical stock or bond investment, and collectors and investors often compete for the same exact assets. It has become routine to see collectibles sell in the hundreds of thousands and millions of dollars.

How NFTs will hold up as alternative assets over time remains to be seen. That said, DraftKings and Autograph are moving ahead to further expand their role within collectibles.

DraftKings recently announced that the company will become the exclusive seller of sports-related NFTs from Autograph’s officially licensed talent roster. More details of the arrangement are said to be coming in August. That said, the initial drops on DraftKings’ Marketplace will be the “Pre-Season Access” collection. This will include NFTs of the athletes from Autograph’s roster and from its partners. The company also noted that fans will also get a chance to obtain preferred access to future NFT releases.

Another aspect of the DraftKings Marketplace is that it will serve as a platform that allows secondary sales, or trading. This allows the users to buy, sell or trade these digital collectibles that have been purchased within this marketplace community. Autograph’s advisory board will help design custom and exclusive NFTs which will begin rolling out later in the summer of 2021 via DraftKings Marketplace drops.

Matt Kalish, DraftKings co-founder and president, said:

The NFT boom has reinvented the collectibles industry and driven excitement to early-adopting audiences worldwide—including the DraftKings community. DraftKings Marketplace will sit at the center of this technological and cultural phenomenon, providing our immense existing customer base with an easily accessible experience that rivals all legacy marketplaces. This initial vision in collaboration with Autograph, and its coveted collection of official digital collectibles, is a vital first step as we enter the emergent NFT market. We aim to usher in this new era by introducing millions of collectors to this evolving space while providing beloved content through an intuitive interface built to win over the long term.

Dillon Rosenblatt, Founder and CEO, of Autograph, said:

As the world becomes more comfortable with digital ownership and collection, we see an incredible opportunity to bring users high-quality and personalized content from their favorite athletes, artists and franchises. NFTs are the perfect medium to connect users to both the things they love and those who share those interests, and we want to leverage today’s incredible partnerships to provide continued value to our community.

While the DraftKings Marketplace will be the exclusive purveyor of Autograph’s sports NFTs, the press release did say this collaboration may eventually branch into other verticals. These were shown as entertainment, lifestyle and culture.

Another aspect to consider here is that Autograph has already entered an agreement with Lionsgate to derive NFT content from their films and television series. Among other properties, the release pointed to titles as follows:

  • The Hunger Games,
  • Rambo IV & V,
  • Dirty Dancing,
  • Blair Witch,
  • Mad Men,
  • John Wick,
  • The Divergent Series,
  • The Expendables,
  • and The Twilight Saga.

As the companies noted, more details will be coming soon. Stay tuned!