Sacramento Kings and crypto Ankr announce partnership

Partnership will create innovative projects to support growth of blockchain industry

                                
Sport and crypto join forces - Photo:Shutterstock
                                

The Sacramento Kings, an American professional basketball team that compete in the National Basketball Association (NBA), has announced a multi-year partnership with Ankr, the digital asset software platform developer for the blockchain economy.

Ankr also has a cryptocurrency listed on CoinMarketCap by the same name.

The partnership deal includes displaying Ankr’s branding on the basketball court baselines at the Sacramento Kings Golden 1 Center.

The Kings and Ankr will be producing educational content, hosting events and creating innovative projects that will support the growth of the blockchain industry.

The Kings and crypto   

The NBA team is far from new to the crypto world. In 2019, the team unveiled the NBA’s first blockchain-powered reward programme in collaboration with Blockparty, which help artists and brands create non-fungible tokens (NFTs).   

In addition, in 2019, the Kings announced another collaboration with CryptoKaiju, creator of the world’s first vinyl toys powered by Ethereum and fully traceable on a public blockchain, to launch the first physical crypto-collectible in professional sports. From November of the same year, fans could purchase one of the 100 limited-edition Kaiju toys.

The Kings also have a charitable crypto mining programme, called MiningForGood, which uses the data centres and tech infrastructure at the Kings’ home court and was set up in 2018.

The charity crypto mining programme was established by another partnership between the Kings and MiningStore.com, which saw crypto mining machines installed in the Tier 4 data centres in the Golden 1 Center. This made the Kings the first sports team in the world to mine cryptocurrencies.   

In 2021, the Kings also launched 85 NFTs which depicted the 1985 commemorative pin given out in the Kings inaugural season in Sacramento and featured other exclusive gifts such as tickets to the 2021-22 opening night games.

Due to its efforts, the team has received such awards such as Most Tech Savvy Team of 2016 by SportTechie, a sports media company.

Ankr’s mission

Ankr, which was founded in 2017, provides infrastructure and the tooling needed to streamline the development of blockchain-based solutions. In 2021, Ankr’s protocol supports more than 50 Proof-of-Stake (PoS) chains through their network and aims “to democratise access to the new internet economies for students, developers, fans and players alike.”

Ankr is “providing accessible liquid staking solutions which eliminate barriers to entry for participants in top blockchain communities like Ethereum 2.0, Polkadot, Polygon and Avalanche.”

Strong relationship 

Vivek Ranadivé, chairperson and owner of Sacramento Kings said: “Sports can be a powerful platform to educate and embrace innovation. We are proud to partner with Ankr to further align our synergies around forward-thinking initiatives and provide fans educational opportunities about the crypto economy.”

Chandler Song, founder of Ankr said: “We have visited the Kings data centre for crypto mining inside their facilities many times and I admire the openness of the owner, Vivek, to embrace new technologies.

“We are aligned in this mission to promote applications of Web 3 technologies. Ankr’s partnership with the Sacramento Kings, one of the most innovative companies in sports and in the NBA, will open a lot of new doors for both sports fans and the crypto community.”

Further reading: NBA Philadelphia 76ers make Crypto.com official partner

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