The $ 17.5 million deal calls for the Berkeley campus soccer field to be renamed FTX Field at California Memorial Stadium
The FTX cryptocurrency derivatives exchange announced yesterday that it is entering into a 10-year relationship with Cal Athletics, the University of California’s sports division on the Berkeley campus.
The $ 17.5 million deal gives FTX the naming rights for the campus soccer field, which will henceforth be known as the FTX field in California Memorial Stadium. This is the first collegiate sponsorship of crypto naming rights, and the rights holder of Cal Athletics will accept payment in cryptocurrency.
University Athletics Director Jim Knowlton commented: “FTX is a growing company at the forefront of innovation in an emerging technology that fits well in both Cal and the Bay Area. This agreement goes well beyond the naming rights that are part of our strategic plan to diversify sources of income to support our student-athlete experience, and includes commitments to our Cameron Institute, Cal Veterans, and students in need here in Berkeley. We look forward to building our relationship now and in the years to come. “
The Cameron Institute for Student-Athlete Development will benefit from an FTX-supported community engagement program that includes advancing public service for student athletes. The initiative will focus on helping disadvantaged communities such as underrepresented college students, the homeless population of Berkeley and the Cal Veterans Group.
The Chief Operating Officer of FTX.US, Sina Nader, said: “We are excited to partner with one of the greatest universities in the world and expand the presence of crypto in the college sports landscape. This historic partnership will also allow us to work together on nonprofit initiatives that align with the core values of our organization. “
FTX and Cal Athletics will support philanthropic projects by launching a community service platform, while social integration, branding of the sports press in the background and branding on the field of play will also play a role in sponsorship.
Sports sponsorship is nothing new to FTX. The crypto exchange has already sponsored Major League Baseball, the esports organization Team SoloMid and the Miami Heat basketball team, which are now playing their home games in the FTX Arena.