Football star Lionel Messi’s signing fee in Paris Saint-Germain includes some chips from fans of the French club’s cryptocurrencies in the latest endorsement of new digital assets. The 34-year-old Argentine left Spanish side Barcelona and signed a two-year contract with Qatar-owned football club Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) on Tuesday with a third-year option and as a part of salary Messi will receive cryptocurrencies.
PSG said on Thursday the chips were included in its “welcome package”, which was estimated at 25-30 million euros (217 to 260 million euros) according to The Telegraph. The club did not disclose the proportion of chips in the package but said the amount was “significant”.
Fan chips are a type of cryptocurrency that allows holders to vote on most minor decisions about their clubs. Among the clubs launching the chips this year are champions of England in the Premier League Manchester City and AC Milan in Italy. Messi’s former club Barcelona launched one last year.
Chips are increasingly seen by clubs as a source of new revenue, and Socios.com, which provides chips for PSG and other top clubs, says that Chips will generate around US$ for its fellow clubs in 2021. Like bitcoin and other digital currencies, fan chips can be traded on a stock exchange. They also share a tendency for wild price fluctuations with other cryptocurrencies, prompting some regulators to issue warnings to investors about the digital asset.
However, several high-level business and entertainment figures have supported the crypto asset, including Tesla boss Elon Musk, Twitter founder Jack Dorsey and rapper Jay-Z, who have shown support for bitcoin.
PSG said that after receiving information about Messi joining the club, his fan chips were traded in large quantities. The trading volume exceeded $1.2 billion in the days following the arrival of the six-time winner of the Ballon d’Or award for the best football player in the world, he said. “We were able to interact with a new global audience, creating a significant influx of digital revenue,” said Mark Armstrong, Partnership Director at PSG.
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