FTX Strikes Sponsorship Deal With MLB, Umpires to Wear Crypto Exchange’s Logo

23 June 2021

Fresh on the heels of the unveiling of the FTX Arena in Miami, the crypto exchange is becoming the “Official Cryptocurrency Exchange brand of MLB,” FTX and Major League Baseball said in an announcement Wednesday.

The data-minded traders at FTX crunched the numbers and found sports naming rights as yielding the best return on investment for their marketing spend, a source with knowledge of the matter told CoinDesk. The deal with MLB is yet another example, following a $210 million tie-up earlier this month with esports team TSM. 

FTX branding will appear on all umpire uniforms starting at the MLB All-Star Game on July 13 and continue into the postseason. MLB is calling FTX its “first-ever umpire uniform patch partner.”

“FTX.COM and FTX.US are excited to enter this first-of-its-kind partnership with Major League Baseball,” FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried said in a statment. “We look forward to announcing further details of our long-term partnership throughout the remainder of this year.”

In a tweet, Bankman-Fried said FTX and MLB have plans on “collaborating on products and experiences together.” The deal includes a provision with the MLB Players Association to “use highlights of players in content creation,” according to Wednesday’s press release.

Naming rights for the Miami Heat arena went for $135 million in a 19-year deal. Financial terms of the MLB sponsorship were not disclosed, though an FTX spokesman told CoinDesk it’s a five-year deal.

Calls to the MLB and MLB Players Association were not returned by press time.

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