Drone Racing League partners with crypto firm Algorand

The five-year sponsorship deal is worth $100m (£72m) or $20m annually.

Red racing drones chasing in the sky                                 
The DRL's sponsorship deal with crypto platform Algorand will be worth $100m over five years - Credit:Shutterstock

New York-based Drone Racing League (DRL) has signed a sponsorship agreement deal with Algorand, the blockchain-based cryptocurrency platform.

The DRL describes itself as “the global, professional drone racing property for elite pilots”, where competitors pilot their drones through virtual international locations at speeds of 80mph.

The $100m (£72m) sponsorship deal with DRL will run for five years, making it worth $20m annually.

“Perfect marriage”

In an interview with CNBC last week, DRL president Rachel Jacobson said the deal with Algorand is not only “transformative” but also the “perfect marriage” as both platforms cater towards a “tech-setter” fan base.

Jacobson added: “When you look across what’s happening with crypto and blockchain, you have to make sure that you’re targeting the right audience.”

The DRL president was formerly a National Basketball Association (NBA) executive and while she believes sports can help newer companies with brand awareness, cautions that crypto firms still need to educate a younger audience about the crypto space. DRL reaches roughly an audience of 75 million fans globally.

Jacobson did, however, add that these sorts of adverts do require targeting and said: “You need to build in the right programming so that it’s not just a logo slap. The crypto community, they are too smart – they see through just a jersey patch or signage. They want to know, ‘How do I get involved? And how is this going to change my sports experience?’”

Nevertheless, the president appeared to remain open to expanding sponsorship deals into new areas when she added: “There are infinite opportunities. We build our drones, and when we think about other lines of business, it could be anything. We’re just getting started.”

PSG and Crypto.com

Last week French football giant Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) entered a multi-year partnership agreement with cryptocurrency platform Crypto.com, making it the first official cryptocurrency platform partner of the club.

The agreement includes the release of exclusive non-fungible tokens (NFTs) on Crypto.com’s NFT platform. Additionally, Crypto.com will pay a significant portion of the sponsorship fee using its native cryptocurrency token, the Crypto.com Coin (CRO).

Further reading: Sports industry ‘quicker’ at adopting crypto deals than other business sectors

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