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Matchday has secured an official license from FIFA as well as the FIFPRO players association. It’s working on a suite of Web3 games accessible to most users.
The rapid developments within the Web3 ecosystem have also captivated sports stars. Argentinian football star Lionel Messi has recently backed a Web3 soccer-centric gaming startup Matchday, during the latest $21 million seed funding round.
The investment in Matchday comes through Lionel Messi’s venture capital firm Play Time. Other investors and players who participated in the funding round include Greylock, Courtside Ventures, Capricorn Investment Group, HackVC, and horizons Ventures.
However, this is not the first time that Lionel Messi has been investing in a Web3-focused startup. Previously, the Paris Saint-Germain F.C. star has invested in a number of moves in the non-fungible tokens (NFT) world.
Lionel Messi is also the brand ambassador for the popular NFT fantasy soccer game Sorare and has invested in the same. “We believe Messi will help us set new standards in how we do this, and we look forward to sharing what new content and fan experiences we’ve been collaborating on soon,” they said.
Additionally, Messi is also associated with the popular fan token platform Socios and has signed a $20 million endorsement deal with them. As part of the deal, Messi will be promoting Socios.com to his 400 million followers across the globe. Featuring Messi, Socios.com also plans to launch its educational and promotional campaigns.
Aprt from this, Lionel Messi has also released his official NFT collectibles through the Ethernity Chain platform.
Securing Official License from FIFA
Matchday said that they have secured an official license from FIFA, the governing body behind all the World Cup events. Matchday co-founder and CEO Derrick Ko said that they would be building a suite of games optimized for “casual” users. “We are building for an untapped audience in the football community,” he added.
Matchday has signed Sebastien de Halleux as the Chief Gaming Officer, who previously worked as an executive at the major game publisher Electronic Arts (EA). Therein he worked on the company’s own FIFA game series as well as the Madden NFT franchise.
De Halleux said: “Our games will be accessible for all players, and centered around true ownership of digital items that will be a point of pride for all players”.
Most Web3 games feature “digital items” which cre nothing but on-chain NFTs signifying ownership over digital assets such as skins, in-game characters, or items. During the 2022 FIFA World Cup, Matchday released a limited-time mini-game giving out roughly 2 million NFT player cards to roughly 600,000 users.