Drone Racing LeagueSource: League
The New York-based Drone Racing League has reached its largest sponsorship deal to date with the cryptocurrency platform Algorand, the company said on Tuesday.
DRL is a first-person racing league where drone pilots fly devices on neon-lit courses and compete for cash prizes. The company started in 2015 and is now valued at $ 200 million, according to PitchBook.
The terms of the deal with Algorand have not been made public, but people familiar with the deal have said CNBC is a five-year pact. 'worth $ 100 million. German financial services firm Allianz, which had owned the property rights since the inception of DRL, will remain a league partner. Excel Sports Management has negotiated thedeal with Algorand.
In an interview with CNBC last week, DRL president Rachel Jacobson called the pact with Algorand a "transformative " and a "perfect marriage ". She added the crypto platform, and DRL caters to a "technologist " fanbase.
Jacobson described the Gen Z audience as savvy early digital users. "who care just as much about launching an Apple iPhone as they do about sports and
"When you look at what happening with crypto and blockchain, you need to make sure you're targeting the right audience, "she added.
Boston-based Algorand owns a blockchain, or digital ledger , and is traded on the cryptocurrency exchange under the ticker symbol ALGO . "As crypto continues to evolve in the financial industry,companies are positioning themselves to attract more digital consumers, using sports sponsorships to build brand awareness.
This year, crypto companies have taken over. er sports active "naming rights in the National Basketball Association and Major League Baseball, and one company has reached an agreement "$ 100 million with Liberty " Media owned by Formula 1. Drone Racing LeagueSource: Drone Racing League
Jacobson, a former NBA executive, said sports relationships help new companies with brand awareness but have added crypto companies will still need to educate a younger audience about the space and use platforms forattractive to get his message across. DRL says it reaches around 75 million fans worldwide.
"You have to put in the right programming so it's not just a logo slap," Jacobson said. "The crypto community, they're too smart - they just see through a jersey patch or signage. They want to know, 'How can I get involved? And how will that change my sports experience? ' "
DRL begins its sixth season on September 29. The league has media rights agreements with NBCUniversal and a streaming agreement with Twitter . Other referrals " include agreements with DraftKings, T-Mobithe , "Bodyarmor and the Air Force . DRL helps the Air Force recruit and to train future drone pilots.
Drones used in races are designed and built by DRL, who build models for each race. Drones are worth around $ 2,000 and can fly up to at 90 mph.
The global drone market - described as "Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Sector - is expected to reach $ 58 " billion by 2026 , according to MarketsandMarkets Research. With DRL also operating as a drone maker, Jacobson has said he wants to leverage products to attract more revenue.
"There are endless opportunities " said Jacobson, noting that more and more companies are testing deliveries using drones. "We build our drones, and when you think of other industries, it can beut be anything. We're just getting started. "
Correction: This article has been revised to correct DRL 's launch year.
Disclosure: NBCUniversal is the parent company of CNBC.