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Terra Names MLB’s Washington Nationals as the Sports Franchise It Is Inking A Partnership With



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The Terra ecosystem has finally revealed which sports team it has struck a deal with after several days of speculation. On Wednesday, Terra shared on Twitter that it had agreed to a five-year deal with Washington Nationals. Though neither party disclosed the financial details of the agreement, the deal is estimated to be worth nearly $40 million.

The first of its kind

The partnership is the first DAO-approved sports sponsorship deal in history. It is also the first sports-related engagement made by Terra network, which controls over 2.7 billion through its decentralized autonomous organization.

The lead-up to this agreement has been eventful. It started at the beginning of the month when Do Kwon, founder of Terraform Labs (the company behind the Terra network), shared a proposal requesting a $38.2 million UST funding from the Terra Community Trust to secure a major partnership with a sports team in one of the four major sports league in the US.

The Terra community voted on the proposal, which redacted the franchise's name at the time. Though voting ended on Tuesday, with about 98% in favor of the proposal, it was already clear from the weekend that the proposal would pass based on the comments from Terra community members.

The exclusive partnership will greatly benefit Terra

The deal will be instrumental in bringing Terra to millions of baseball fans that support the D.C.-based MLB team.

“This first-of-its-kind partnership between a DAO and a sports franchise opens a new world of opportunities for bringing crypto and DeFi to the masses,” Kwon said in a statement shared by the MLB team.

The choice of the Washington Nationals was reportedly influenced by the fact that the team is located in DC – where most policies in the US are made. As part of the arrangement, Terra will get branding in various forms.

A digital educational series focused on Terra

First, both parties will work on a five-part video series with informative content promoting the Terra network. This will be shared on the franchise's social platforms. Terra logo and other signage will also be featured in the Nationals Park, helping gain exposure from television coverage.

“By approving this sponsorship deal, the community has a new way to engage and educate the public, including the policy makers doing important work in Washington, DC, about decentralized money and the burgeoning technology that underlies it,” the Terraform Labs founder added.

Exclusive seating naming rights for five years

The elite club of indoor suites behind the home plate, previously known as the Nationals Club, will be renamed Terra Club. Terra's US dollar-pegged stable coin TerraUSD (UST) could also be accepted as a payment means for in-stadium purchases starting next season. This also means that the Nationals fans could be able to pay for tickets using the stablecoin.

“We are excited to partner with Terra to name our most exclusive club and explore bringing powerful new fan experiences to Nationals Park, including the use of UST cryptocurrency to make purchases,” Washington Nationals' Mark D. Lerner detailed.

The DAO's algorithmic stablecoin ranks the 18th-largest cryptocurrency with a market capitalization of $11.26 billion. It is the fourth largest among stablecoins behind Tether, USD Coin and Binance USD.

SEC lawsuit against Terraform Labs

Even as Terra continues expanding its ecosystem, it remains under investigation by US Securities and Exchange Commission. Last year, the regulator subpoenaed Kwon and Terraform Labs on possible charges related to Terra's synthetic asset-focused Mirror Protocol.

Kwon, at first, repudiated claims that he had been subpoenaed during a crypto conference. However, it was confirmed that he is indeed under the SEC's radar when he filed a lawsuit against the regulator, claiming that it ‘violated its rules requiring it to keep formal orders of investigation confidential.'

Crypto and sports intersection

Worth noting this is not the first case of a sports franchise accepting payments made via crypto assets. Mark Cuban's NBA team Dallas Mavericks started accepting DOGE payments for its tickets and other merchandise last year. Long before that, another NBA team, Sacramento Kings, introduced Bitcoin payments support for merchandise through BitPay in 2014.

The Terra-Washington Nationals deal is the latest between a crypto-related entity and a professional sports team or league. Last November, shelled out $700 million to secure exclusive naming rights to the Los Angeles arena previously known as the Staple Center.

While most previous sports-crypto deals have been around the NBA, a shift to the MLB opens up new opportunities for other entities.

To learn more about Terra and its ecosystem visit our Investing in Terra guide.

Sam is a financial content specialist with a keen interest in the blockchain space. He has worked with several firms and media outlets in the Finance and Cybersecurity fields.