Another digital currency firm is making moves into the sports world as the Philippines crypto wallet service provider Coins.ph announced the company has partnered with the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA). The deal is the PBA’s first crypto partnership during its 47th season and the Coins.ph brand will be showcased at the premier tournament during the Philippine Cup.
Philippine Basketball Association Partners With Crypto Firm Coins.ph
Over the last year, well known digital currency companies like FTX, Crypto.com, Grayscale Investments, and Blockchain.com have integrated the firms into the sports world through various partnerships and endeavors. On June 3, the regulated fiat and crypto service provider Coins.ph announced it has partnered with the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA).
The PBA was initiated in 1975 and is the second-oldest professional basketball league in the world following the National Basketball Association (NBA). The league is composed of 12 franchised teams and the PBA season’s most prestigious tournament is the Philippine Cup. PBA teams include Barangay Ginebra San Miguel, Meralco Bolts, Converge Fiberxers, Magnolia Hotshots, Blackwater Bossing, Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters, Terrafirma Dyip, TNT Tropang Giga, Rain or Shine Elasto Painters, San Miguel Beermen, NLEX Road Warriors, and Northport Batang Pier.
The upcoming 2022 Philippine Cup will be the first time since 2019 that fans can experience the full-arena experience at 100% capacity. Coins.ph detailed in its announcement that the company’s “brand presence [will be] featured throughout the Philippine Cup.” Coins.ph plans to engage with fans by offering “interactive experiences” and promoting cryptocurrency awareness. PBA fans will be able to win cryptocurrencies and Coins.ph will also be highlighted in television ads during the 2022 PBA season.
“Basketball plays a very important part in the Filipino culture and that makes it a perfect match for Coins.ph, a proudly home-grown fintech brand in the Philippines,” Wei Zhou, the CEO of Coins.ph explained in a statement sent to Bitcoin.com News. Zhou added that in recent times, the firm has seen interest in Web3 and digital currencies grow and the PBA’s prominence can help bolster crypto awareness. Zhou added:
We have seen a surge in engagement with Web3 in the Philippines and we believe that more and more Filipinos are joining the crypto community. The PBA is a great platform to educate Filipinos on the crypto-economy and we value this opportunity to expand crypto market adoption.
PBA Commissioner Says Coins.ph Gives ‘Fans the Opportunity to Engage in a New Way’
Founded in 2014, Coins.ph has raised roughly $40 million in capital funding and the most recent Series C saw a $30 million investment round led by Ribbit Capital. In addition to the partnership with the PBA, executives from Coins.ph and Xendit launched a non-fungible token (NFT) platform with $2 million in seed funding.
Coins.ph was once owned by the Indonesian tech company Gojek which purchased the startup for $95 million. According to a report published by Ka Kay Lum, the deputy editor and business journalist at the-ken.com’s SEA edition, several regional investors associated with Gojek and Coins.ph confirmed that the former CFO of Binance, Wei Zhou, purchased the company. Ka Kay Lum details that Coins.ph was sold “for double the amount” Gojek paid for the startup in 2019.
During the last year, celebrity athletes and the sports industry have been leveraged by crypto companies to gather more exposure. For instance, FTX obtained the name of the Miami Heat’s arena and Crypto.com acquired the name of the Los Angeles Lakers arena. Well known sports stars like LeBron James, Tom Brady, Francis Ngannou, and Kevin Durant have become partners with crypto firms. In terms of the deal between the PBA and Coins.ph, Willie O. Marcial, the PBA’s league commissioner, believes the partnership with Coins.ph will enhance the PBA’s growth.
“The PBA is the 1st professional basketball league in Asia and is already an institution in the country,” Marcial remarked during the partnership announcement. “It is still unparalleled when it comes to professional sports entertainment. And partnering with Coins.ph will surely take the PBA a step further as it continues to improve and strengthen its position as one of the best leagues in the region. Further, the PBA is all about growth and improvement. Having Coins.ph will give fans the opportunity to engage in a new way and at the same time learn about the crypto community.”
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