Article By Gerald Fenech
Blockchain is coming to the Japanese soccer world as an innovative partnership between a startup that focuses on tokenizing digital collectibles and a football club looks to revolutionize the way fan merchandise is sold and stored digitally.
Vissel Kobe, a J.League football club is set to launch the first fan-powered USA tour using blockchain-authenticated fan merchandise. The Vissel Kobe USA Tour 2019 presented by Rakuten is set to take place across Southern California in a 4 friendlies match-up against; Columbus Crew, LAFC, Toronto FC, and Orange County SC from January 28th to February 4th.
Vissel Kobe partnered up with blockchain startup, Verified Collection as their exclusive merchandise partner to release a limited-edition drop kit that includes physical products that will be authenticated by blockchain technology unlocking digital collectibles. Verified Collection is a social marketplace where consumers can discover, authenticate and unlock interactive experiences with the physical and digital goods they collect.
I spoke to Dil-Domine Jacobe Leonares, Founder and CEO of Verified Collection who explained that this tour would introduce new technology for merchandise authentication on the blockchain.
“We’re excited for this opportunity to be the first fan-powered sports tour showcasing our quantum fingerprint TAG system to authenticate fan merchandise which unlocks interactive experiences across web, mobile and console devices…” .
This integration of physical and digital goods in the sports world is set to drive a new era of fan engagement across a global marketplace, he added.
Verified Collection will release limited-edition Vissel Kobe drop kit pre-sale for $125 USD (MSRP $250) and will include a blockchain-authenticated Vissel Kobe USA Tour 2019 exclusive football, tour t-shirt, and football fan scarf which will utilize VC’s technology to help verify authentication of fan merchandise. As a ‘Thank You’ to the fans, Vissel Kobe has included 25 team-signed jerseys chasers into the pre-sale that will be randomly placed in boxes as a token of appreciation.
In exclusive comments, world soccer legend and Vissel Kobe player Andres Iniesta said: “This is the first time in Japanese football club history for a J.League team to travel overseas to the United States to play friendly matches. This opportunity to thank the Vissel Kobe fans for their commitment and support to the football club through this blockchain authenticated fan-merchandise is something that hasn’t been seen in the world of Japanese football.”
Fans interested in purchasing a pre-sale limited-edition drop kit can visit www.verifiedcollection.com today and take part in this fan-powered sports tour bringing football legends; Andres Iniesta, David Villa and Lukas Podolski to the United States to play friendly matches against some of the biggest names in North American football. The deal brokered by Sports&Life (www.sportsandlf.com) between Rakuten, Vissel Kobe, and Verified Collection will launch a new era in global sports fan engagement. Also, you can stop by www.visselkobeusatour.com to learn more about the tour dates and to pick up tickets to the matches.