Beşiktaş JK’s US$1.3m Icrypex sponsorship to be paid in Bitcoin

Cryptocurrency firm becomes basketball team’s naming rights and jersey sponsor.

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  • One-season deal will see Icrypex pay 42 Bitcoins
  • The eToro platform previously paid for seven Premier League sponsorship deals using the cryptocurrency

Cryptocurrency marketplace Icrypex and Turkish basketball team Beşiktaş JK have agreed a naming rights and jersey sponsorship deal that will be paid for entirely in Bitcoin.

The one-season deal will see Icrypex part with 42 Bitcoins – equal to approximately US$1.3 million – for the Basketball Super League club to be officially called Beşiktaş Icrypex.

In addition, Icrypex branding will appear on the chest of the team’s playing jerseys for the duration of the agreement.

Gökalp İçer, chief executive of Icrypex, said the deal was in line with the company’s ambition to “try new things that have never been done in this industry within our geography”, while he also noted that the company wants to expand its collaboration with Beşiktaş to include “new blockchain projects”.

İçer claimed that paying for sports sponsorship rights in Bitcoin is “a first in the world”, but other brands have previously used the same payment method in markets outside of Turkey.

In 2018, for example, investment platform eToro said it would be using Bitcoin to pay for its sponsorship deals with seven clubs in English soccer’s Premier League. 

In other cryptocurrency news, Scottish Premiership leaders Rangers have named Bitci Technology as their shorts sponsor until the end of the 2022/23 season.

The wide-ranging agreement will lead to the creation of a Rangers fan token, making the Scottish soccer side the latest in a growing list of clubs to have their own digital currency, alongside the likes of Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain and Atletico Madrid.