Lisbon-based Benfica, one of the largest clubs in European soccer and the most decorated club in Portugal, announced it would start to sell tickets and merchandise for cryptocurrency.
The club has been accepting Bitcoin, Ethereum, and the UTRUST token (UTK) payments since about a week ago. They’ll be working with Utrust, a cryptocurrency payment processor headquartered in Zug, Switzerland.
Benfica’s fans now can use cryptocurrency to purchase match tickets and merchandise through the club’s official online store.
There have been other soccer clubs dealing with the blockchain technology in some way or another in recent years (Gibraltar United and Paris Saint-Germain come to mind), but none with as big reputation and a fan base as Benfica.
The decision to accept cryptocurrency is designed to boost Benfica’s e-commerce strategy and expand its global audience by drawing tech-savvy supporters and cryptocurrency holders to the Lisbon club. The addition of a cryptocurrency option would also resolve common issues with credit card payments, like chargebacks and fraudulent payments.
Nuno Correia, the co-founder of the Utrust crypto payment processing platform, said the company is delighted about the deal with Benfica and, consequently, its 14 million benfiquistas (fans) around the world. Benfica’s digital fan base exceeds 7 million across its social media platforms and the soccer club hopes to further grow that number by offering an enhanced online experience thanks to the partnership with Utrust.
Such moves by high profile companies as Benfica and, for another recent example, AT&T are great for improving the public’s perception of crypto, as many still associate Bitcoin and other digital currencies with scams, the dark web, and other nefarious uses.
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