The National Basketball Association has a new partnership.
As the league prepares to begin its 75th season on Tuesday, the NBA agreed to its first multi-year, cryptocurrency sponsorship deal with Coinbase, a publicly-traded company that allows crypto transactions and collects money from fees.
Coinbase will utilize all of the NBA’s platforms, including the WNBA, NBA G League, NBA 2K League and USA Basketball. The terms of the deal have not yet been provided. Coinbase, which has a $64 billion market cap, is traded on the Nasdaq and was up 3.5% on Tuesday afternoon.
"As a trusted cryptocurrency platform used by millions, Coinbase is a natural fit as the NBA’s first-ever partner in this thriving category," said Kerry Tatlock, NBA senior vice president of global marketing partnerships and media. "We look forward to collaborating with Coinbase to provide fans with new ways to engage with the league and each other, while also enhancing the experience for fans who are already Coinbase users."
On Monday, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said that the league is projected to make $10 billion in revenue for the upcoming 2021-22 season. With fans expected to return to arenas, 40% of the league revenue will come from the sale of tickets, concessions and and other facility merchandise. Sponsorships accounted for $1.4 billion last year, according to IEG.
With the Coinbase deal, the NBA believes sponsorship dollars should increase as well.
"The freedom to participate and benefit from the things you believe in is at the heart of Coinbase’s mission. Nobody believes this more than NBA and WNBA fans. We’re proud to become the Leagues’ official cryptocurrency partner," said Kate Rouch, chief marketing officer at Coinbase. "As part of the partnership, we will create interactive experiences to engage with the NBA and WNBA’s incredible community and athletes around the world."