Why did Cerezo Osaka, celebrating its 30th anniversary, choose generative NFT with a fan motif? | CoinDesk JAPAN

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J League “Cerezo Osaka” is conducting INO of club NFT “CEREZO OSAKA SUPPORTERS NFT (abbreviation: Ceresapo NFT)” on Coincheck INO. The number of applications for the Arrow List (so-called pre-sale), which was held until November 28th, was 1,177 out of 100 units sold, a multiplier of 11.7 times, and when sales started on a first-come, first-served basis on the 30th, it took just under 7 minutes. Sold out.

When you think of sports-related NFTs, some people may think of Dapper Labs’ NFT game NBA Top Shot. At its peak, NFT cards containing video game highlights were selling for hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Reference article: Dapper Lab’s NBA Top Shot has $700 million in sales and 1 million users – the CEO tells us the secret to its breakthrough

On the other hand, this time’s “Selesapo NFT” is not an NFT of game footage or player images, but an NFT of a character that symbolizes the fans who support the team. It is a generative NFT that uses a program to randomly combine image data divided into parts to generate different art. This is the first time for a domestic professional sports team, let alone the J.League, to issue and actually sell generative NFTs.

Attitude to take on new challenges

Why did Cerezo Osaka choose generative NFT? Naoto Inohara, who led this initiative as business manager, said, “For about a year, we had been discussing what kind of initiatives we should take as a new business, especially in the context of Web3.As for the club’s circumstances, due to the coronavirus pandemic, admission “It became difficult to earn income from fees, and our main source of income became negative, so we had to step into various new things,” he said of the background.

“Another aim of the Sele Support NFT is to connect with fans digitally and expand the community.The NFT allows fans to enjoy the IP issued by the club without damaging its value. It has become a feature of

Mr. Inohara also has a personal interest in NFTs, and was also looking into the case of NBA Top Shot. However, in the case of the J.League, the league owns the rights to some of the game footage, so it was difficult for clubs to turn it into NFTs on their own. Additionally, he did not want the project to simply turn the club’s IP into NFTs and sell them.

Press conference commemorating the 30th anniversary of Cerezo Osaka (©CEREZO OSAKA)

“Creating a new source of revenue was a major objective, but we wanted to show that we are not just trying to second-guess NFT, but instead working on something new and taking on challenges as a club.Cerezo Osaka will celebrate its 30th anniversary on December 9th. It was also a major turning point as the 30th anniversary year started.”

What does generative NFT mean?

Although the adoption of generative NFTs was difficult due to the rights of the league and players in using game footage and player images, it actually has great meaning.

Yoshikazu Kamino, executive officer and sports business manager at Financier, who supported the CeleSapo NFT initiative, says:

“By turning a character modeled after a cheering fan into an NFT, we realized an approach where the club creates a new IP, rather than converting the club’s existing IP into an NFT. can use NFTs freely, and the value of NFTs will increase as they are used freely.By creating a new form of support in the digital space, we aimed for a model that would also lead to profits for the club.

When it comes to NFTs that use match footage or player images, it is difficult for buyers to use them freely. The trend is to “restrict” its use. However, with Ceresapo NFT using generative NFT, such problems will disappear. Rather, having people actively use it will lead to the creation and improvement of value.

Currently, the NFT market is in a difficult environment. Mr. Inohara said, “I am aware of the situation, but this initiative is different from conventional ones, and I feel it has potential.”

“If the club is doing it.”

Pre-sales at Arrowrist got off to a good start, selling out in just under seven minutes. However, Ihara believes that awareness and understanding of NFT among Cerezo fans is still not high.

“Going forward, the challenge is how to expand the use of Ceresapo NFT among fans. There are some aspects that I don’t understand, but I want to create an opportunity for people to say, “The club is doing something, so let’s buy it.”

Fans who purchase Ceresapo NFTs print their own unique generative NFT images on T-shirts and wear them to the stadium. When you imagine such a scene, it’s certainly interesting.

The public sale at Coincheck starts on December 5th. If this initiative goes well, “I would like to continue it with a second and third phase” (Mr. Ihara).

Mr. Hiroaki Morishima, President and Representative Director of Cerezo Osaka (©CEREZO OSAKA)

Expectations for the new season and excitement about NFTs

Cerezo Osaka announced their new uniform for next season at their 30th anniversary press conference held on November 28th. Generative NFTs were also wearing the current season’s uniform when they announced the INO implementation at Coincheck INO, but when they reach the buyers, they will be wearing the new season’s uniform.

Mr. Inohara said, “In the future, the value of NFTs will change depending on the uniform design and team performance that year, and the value of NFTs with the same uniform number as a successful player may increase.” I set my sights on.

3000 generative NFTs will be issued this time. No two have the same design. The design is not finalized at the time of purchase, and you will only know it when you receive it.

In terms of timing, the excitement of unveiling the new season’s uniforms and even the announcement of new players was a perfect combination with the excitement of generative NFTs, where you never know what you’ll receive.

This is the second project for Coincheck INO, which is selling NFT collections for the first time. Coincheck Crypto Asset Business Headquarters NFT Division Manager Kazuki Nakamura said, “The first project aimed to deliver many new experiences unique to Web3 to users in the gaming area. I hope that this new form of support will permeate club sports in general and become the norm.”

What kind of scenes will unfold at the stadium for the 30th anniversary of the team’s founding, including a new style of cheering in the digital space using generative NFTs, and even connections with real-life cheering? 2024 looks like it will be a year of attention.

|Written and edited by Takayuki Masuda
|Image provided by: Cerezo Osaka

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