Arsenal review Socios.com deal after price manipulation allegations
The Arsenal Supporters Trust (AST) said it was concerning for Arsenal to sign a deal with Chiliz
Premier League club Arsenal are reviewing their relationship with Socios.com, after allegations emerged that the company withheld payments to staff and advisers to maintain the value of Chiliz (CHZ), the company’s own crypto.
Chiliz is the global blockchain provider for the sports industry and parent company of Socios.com, the fan engagement and reward app.
Arsenal told The Mail on Sunday that they asked Socios.com and Chiliz for more details on the allegations that Alexandre Dreyfus, founder and CEO of Chiliz and Socios.com did not pay certain individuals to help hold the value of CHZ.
Back in July 2021, Arsenal launched a fan token with Socios.com after partnering with Chiliz. The $AFC Fan Token gives supporters access to interactive polls every football season, as well as providing them with access to club-related content, quizzes, competitions and games.
At the time of the deal, the Arsenal Supporters Trust (AST) tweeted to make it clear that they did not support the decision.
The fan group said they were informed regarding the decision to partner with Socios.com but were given no chance to get involved or give feedback on it. The group said it is a “concern that the club is trying to monetarise fan opinion and engagement”.
An Arsenal spokesperson told The Mail on Sunday “We are speaking with Socios.com to understand more about the allegations. We always carry out due diligence through independent specialists before we enter any partnership.
“We are not promoting fan tokens as a financial investment, and we are clear it's about engaging with the club by taking part in polls and competitions. However, we make people aware there are financial risks if they choose to invest.”
Chiliz denies price manipulation
A Chiliz spokesperson denied these claims, stating that Dreyfus was not attempting to control the value of CHZ.
This article has been updated after a spokesperson from Chiliz commented: “The allegations in this story are completely false and have no source.”