The Hero Indian Super League, the biggest football league in India has announced a landmark partnership with London-based platform Terra Virtua to join the booming NFT market. With this, ISL has become the 1st sports league in India to launch its own exclusive non-fungible token as digital collectibles. The league, co-owned by Reliance Industries and Star India is set to launch the NFT collection ahead of the 2021-2022 season which starts November 19.
Under the two-year licensed partnership, Terra Virtua, an entertainment focused collectibles platform will create digital collectibles that’ll feature the sports league as well as the 11 clubs. Right from the league’s inception in 2014, the player cards, in-match highlights, league’s memorable moments amongst other things, will be made available for fans to buy and trade as interactive memorabilia.
The digital collectibles will allow ISL and its clubs to connect with millennials
Speaking about the partnership, ISL’s Digital Head Hoshedar Gundevia mentioned that digital collectibles give way to innovative opportunities to connect with the growing Indian football audience. “Digital collectibles have been one of the most talked-about fan engagement avenues in 2021, and ISL being a young league would like to keep pace with the demands of India’s millennial and Gen-Z audience segments,” he highlighted.
Terra Virtua CEO and co-founder Gary Bracey opined that this partnership marks a big day for the future of Indian and International sport, given that its’ Terra Virtua’s first collaboration in the sports realm. “The partnership signals a fundamental shift in the way sports fans will be able to engage with their favourite sports teams going forward, allowing them to collect and trade interactive player merchandise and dynamic digital memorabilia with fellow fans,” the CEO expressed.
He went on to add that this collaboration aims to make a collectibles an ‘intrinsic part’ of the sporting experience by directly engaging with the fans.
What is Terra Virtua?
Started in 2016, Terra Virtua Ltd is the first, fully immersed, block chain driven social, digital collectibles entertainment platform. Currently, Terra Virtua offers digital collectibles across a wide variety of realms including movies, books, TV shows etc. In a recent move, the organization switched its platform from the Ethereum blockchain to Indian platform Polygon in order to be more sustainable.
“In the world of sports, everyone's jumping on to NFT's… it seems to have become the new big thing. But we have been working hard on this for four years. We have spent three years building the platform and have been trading for over one year now. So we are not the sort of new kids on the block,” Bracey further added.