Crypto derivatives exchange FTX is reportedly on the brink of acquiring exclusive naming rights to the home of the National Basketball Association’s (NBA) Miami Heat.
A Miami Herald report cites sources familiar with the matter that the firm led by blockchain billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried is finalizing a sponsorship deal with Miami-Dade County in Florida, which owns the home arena of the Miami Heat.
If the negotiation pushes through, FTX will replace American Airlines as the name sponsor of the stadium.
- “Miami-Dade County is getting closer to signing a cryptocurrency company to replace American Airlines as the naming-rights sponsor of the Miami Heat’s downtown arena, according to several sources — a deal that would deliver the NBA its first venue tied to Bitcoin and other electronic currencies.”
The report adds that the registration of the web domain ftxarena.com and FTXarena social media handle suggests that FTX is now preparing for the transition.
The move will make FTX the first crypto exchange to sponsor a major professional sports venue. FTX’s effort to gain more visibility in the world of sports comes amid the rising popularity of cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) among sports fans, who can now purchase game tickets and merchandise using digital assets.
In addition, the NBA is reportedly forming an advisory group that will explore how the league can use the blockchain, the technology underpinning cryptocurrencies and NFTs.