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ESPORTS FIRST AS VITALITY CS:GO TEAM WEAR JERSEY CHOSEN BY FANS ON SOCIOS.COM AT IEM COLOGNE

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ESPORTS FIRST AS VITALITY CS:GO TEAM WEAR JERSEY CHOSEN BY FANS ON SOCIOS.COM AT IEM COLOGNE
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Vitality’s CS:GO team surprised fans by wearing the jersey chosen using $VIT Fan Tokens on stage before their clash with Renegades

Team Vitality have broken new ground in esports fan engagement at the Intel Extreme Masters (IEM) Tournament in Cologne after appearing onstage wearing a jersey chosen exclusively by  $VIT Fan Token holders on Socios.

Vitality fans were asked to choose between three unique jersey design options for the first poll on fan engagement app Socios.com. The chosen jersey design features the inclusion of the word Vitality and the $VIT fan token badge in the center of the jersey representing Team Vitality’s connection to its fans, and the importance of its community being at the heart of the organisation.

Team Vitality’s CS:GO team then surprised fans by revealing the winning option live on stage ahead of their clash with Renegades.

Team Vitality launched their $VIT Fan Token on July 1st, with the initial supply of 350,000 priced at €2 selling out in a matter of hours.

Fan Tokens are collectible digital assets, minted on the Chiliz blockchain, that provide owners with access to voting rights in polls, VIP rewards, exclusive promotions, AR-enabled features, chat forums, games and competitions on Socios.com.

Since its inception in 2013, Team Vitality has grown into one of the biggest esports organisations in the world and home to some of the industry’s best esports players who compete in the biggest global esports titles. Over the last six months, Team Vitality has continued to build upon its esports legacy, most recently announcing its expansion into Brazil with the signing of Hugo “Dioud” Padioleau as its first official ambassador, and the reveal of its new League of Legends rosters.

Team Vitality will use Fan Tokens to empower their fanbase with a selection of unique and exciting rewards. Fans who purchase $VIT Fan Tokens will have access to exclusive content, activations around Team Vitality players, shop vouchers and also have the opportunity to attend events as special guests. Team Vitality will also host monthly polls where its fans can vote and have a direct impact on key organisational decisions.

Team Vitality are the fifth esports team to launch a Fan Token on Socios, joining OG, NAVI, Team Heretics and Team Alliance on the platform.

The Socios network consists of a roster of 40+  elite international sporting organizations, including world leading football clubs Paris Saint-Germain, FC Barcelona, Juventus, Manchester City, Atlético Madrid and the Argentina national team.  Leading MMA organisations the UFC and PFL have also launched Fan Tokens on Socios.com, as will Aston Martin Cognizant and Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN of  Formula One™.

Driven by the central belief that transitioning passive fans into active fans is essential to the future of esports and sport, Socios is a direct-to-consumer (D2C) platform that leverages blockchain technology to provide partners with the tools to engage with and monetize their global fanbases. Fan Tokens have generated over $150M in revenues to be shared with Socios.com partners in 2021 alone.

Created by Chiliz, the leading blockchain provider for the global sports and entertainment industry, Socios.com will continue its global expansion throughout  2021 and is targeting many more Fan Token with partners from across the world.

Socios has multiple office locations around the world and has recently opened new regional headquarters in Madrid, Istanbul, São Paulo and Buenos Aires. The company will also open a new office in North America in the near future.

“At Team Vitality we are so proud of the success of our first fan token thanks to the support of our dedicated fans. With 350,000 sold at launch, $VIT marks the most successful esports FTO on Socios platform, we are honoured to share this milestone with our fans and partners at Socios and Chiliz. To see the fan selected jersey design on our CS:GO players on stage at such a major tournament like IEM Cologne was an exciting moment for us, and altogether represents how connected our players are with fans,” said Nicolas Maurer, CEO, Team Vitality.

Alexandre Dreyfus, CEO of Chiliz and Socios, said:  “Seeing Vitality’s CS:GO team wearing the jersey picked by their fans live on stage at a major tournament is proof of how serious they are about using $VIT Fan Tokens to create unprecedented engagement and influence opportunities for their global fanbase.

“The response to the initial sale, the reaction from fans to the first groundbreaking poll and the reveal of the winning jersey live on stage at IEM has been a great success. What an amazing start!”

Blockchain

Blockchain betting market, Azuro, aims to tackle liquidity problems with the latest seed funding round

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The global betting and predictions market is expected to grow to over $92 billion by 2023 as new players, nations, and states embrace the industry. Huge economies such as the U.S. have long prohibited gambling but in 2018, some states legalized the practice, adding $1.5 billion to the global recorded figure of online betting revenue by the end of 2020.

Image source: Azuro

With many other states expected to follow the path, the gambling industry may surpass the predicted figure – $100 billion in annual revenue being the target by the end of 2023.

In light of the explosive rise in sports betting during the pandemic, many decentralized betting protocols have come up trying to sway users and players towards blockchain-based prediction markets. On Wednesday, Azuro, a decentralized DAO of betting and prediction markets, announced a successful $3.5 million seed funding round led by top VCs and angel investors ranging from DeFi, GameFi, traditional betting markets, and other blockchain-related areas.

The seed investment round was led by three companies namely Gnosis, Polymorphic Capital, and Flow Ventures. Other investors in the round included Ethereal Ventures, Arrington XRP Capital, AllianceDAO (a.k.a. DeFi Alliance), Delphi Digital, Meta Cartel Ventures, Merit Circle, and Clever Advertising.

Since the launch of decentralized prediction platforms in 2017, the space has rather stagnated despite the demand from players and the crypto ecosystem skyrocketing to a $3 trillion market capitalization. While many attempts have been made to make them work, most of these platforms have failed terribly in delivering on the fundamentals that Web2 betting companies capitalized on including an array of events, deep liquid markets, competitive odds, and multiple betting options. Additionally, current blockchain-based betting solutions suffer from single liquidity providers, product depth, and a bad UX for their players.

The latest capital injection into Azuro aims to solve these problems by launching a transparent, trustless, and decentralized platform. Currently, liquidity providers (LPs) on prediction markets have to start markets manually, set the odds and seed liquidity to each market they create. This means the LPs hold all the betting risks while having little incentive to do so. This has caused massive capital and liquidity exiting the decentralized prediction markets – as it happened with Gnosis, a partner of Azuro.

Furthermore, prediction markets are inefficient for bets with 3 or more outcomes. Most are bound to stick with YES/NO markets, which is dramatically insufficient especially for sports and related bets with more than two outcomes. Lastly, most of these platforms face regulatory pressure and geographical constraints, which could impact the growth of betting markets or even see them shut down.

Unlike its competition, Azuro is building a new protocol to enhance liquidity provision and minimize the betting risks for LPs on the platform. The platform employs a “pooled liquidity structure”, similar to DeFi protocols, which means LPs will not have to manually create markets and are not exposed to the betting market’s systematic risks. Instead, the risk is spread across all betting markets on the protocol, and therefore dramatically reduced for the LPs.

Additionally, the funds will be used to build a friendly UX architecture that allows for the full depth of the betting product available at centralized sportsbooks and a classic frontend, similar to traditional betting markets. Unlike most of the decentralized prediction markets today, Azuro will also allow users to easily set up multiple betting options, moving from the binary “Yes/No”, currently widely spread across decentralized prediction markets.

The decentralized betting governance protocol

Over the past year, DAOs have become the norm in the crypto industry, allowing participants on the platform to vote on proposals made to improve or upgrade the protocol. Similarly, Azuro plans to launch its DAO to reduce the external influence from regulators and authorities.

According to a statement, the platform holds liquidity as the base infrastructure layer with players and customer interactions built on top of it. This approach “outsources much of the direct-to-consumer efforts and relieves Azuro from most of the regulatory, KYC, legal and operational lift”, the statement further reads. Azuro breaks the role of traditional bookmakers into smaller roles, much more attainable for smaller participants. Azuro connects these participants in an elaborate dance thus providing players with a better experience in a decentralized way.

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Blockchain

EVOS Esports Partners with Metaverse Game Avarik Saga

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Southeast Asian esports organisation EVOS Esports has partnered with Avarik Saga, a Japanese RPG NFT P2E metaverse game, to expand the former’s collection of games, including the adoption of blockchain-based games.

Set to launch in the third quarter of this year, Avarik Saga is a strategic team-building game under the Japanese RPG genre that aims to bring the modern game experience into the NFT metaverse space. Under the partnership, EVOS Esports will introduce blockchain technology to potentially untapped audiences in Indonesia and other Southeast Asian countries. This includes people who have not previously engaged with NFTs or games in general.

According to EVOS, it believes NFT play-to-earn (P2E) metaverse games such as Avarik Saga can empower fans and communities, and this partnership will propel the company towards its ambition of becoming the first blockchain game company in Indonesia.

EVOS CMO Michael Wijaya said that he is very excited that EVOS can help Avarik Saga tap into existing local gaming communities and introduce the first Indonesian NFT P2E Metaverse RPG game, as well as foster a solid relationship to spearhead the blockchain game experience.

In September last year, Avarik Saga released its first playable NFT character collection of 8888 genesis NFTs, which sold out in less than an hour. The collection is currently available for trading in a secondary NFT marketplace, OpenSea.

While leveraging the enticement of RPG gameplays, Avarik Saga itself aims to use its P2E format, coupled with the enticement of RPG gameplays, to help accelerate the mass-market adoption of NFT gaming in Southeast Asian countries.

Avarik Saga CEO Kevin Cahya said that P2E is a mechanism that can only be a worthwhile venture if the game drives excitement and value to the community.

“In the end, the core of the game itself has to be enjoyable. A strong lore that entices the user to the Avarik Saga universe, a clear game mechanic that is engaging and content that makes the player want to come back is key. So, we want to develop an attractive game that appeals to the masses, even Gojek drivers and warung (small shop) owners, so they can earn real money while experiencing a digital world,” he added.

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Blockchain

Abstraction Enters Blockchain Game Development Space with Mythical Games Partnership

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Abstraction Enters Blockchain Game Development Space with Mythical Games Partnership
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Studio renowned for technical prowess and creativity chosen as part of initial group of developers to work with new crypto-powered games platform

Abstraction, a creative game development studio based in The Netherlands, is one of the first to partner up with Mythical Games. Recently valued at $1.2 billion, Mythical Games has selected to work with Abstraction on an action-strategy game based on the developer’s own proprietary technology, which will be integrated into Mythical’s new crypto platform.

“Mythical Games is at the forefront of scarcity-driven game design, and it’s exciting to be here at the beginning with them, exploring new ways to unlock the potential of crypto-powered games,” said Ralph Egas, CEO and Founder of Abstraction. “We share Mythical’s vision for player-owned economies and NFTs and are eager to apply our extensive AAA game development experience to the Mythical Platform, leveraging blockchain technologies to help set the industry standard for play-to-earn and digital ownership within video games.”

In line with the goals of the Mythical Platform, the unnamed action-strategy game will be play-to-earn, unlocking the player’s ability to reap rewards based on NFTs (non-fungible tokens), which use the transparency and security of the digital ledger of blockchain to authenticate rare items. Built on “a private EVM-compatible sidechain,” the Mythical Platform allows players to value and sell their own in-game items. It can integrate with existing games or be part of a new game, and includes tools for trades, payments, integration with in-game inventory, and fraud protection.

“We have been working with the team at Abstraction for over a year on a prototype using the incredible simulation tech they have built,” said John Linden, Co-founder and CEO of Mythical Games. “This is the type of innovation that can completely change a game experience for the better; we believe a combination of their technology and our economic platform has the potential to create a new and exciting game economy that players will enjoy for years to come. We are excited to work with Abstraction on bringing this evolution to life.”

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