After announcing that it wants to expand its business to Brazil, Turkish cryptocurrency exchange Bitci is involved in several cases of broken deals with sports entities.
According to Bloomberg sources, two European football clubs have ended their business relationships with the platform. One of them was Sporting Lisboa, the club that unveiled football star Cristiano Ronaldo. The second club is the Italian Spezia.
Prior to that, about two weeks ago, McLaren Racing had also terminated its sponsorship contract with Bitci.
Bitci loses sponsorship contracts woth two football clubs
In addition to working as a platform for trading cryptocurrencies, Bitci is also known for being an issuer of so-called Fan Tokens, a kind of blockchain-based partner 2.0 program.
Turkish exchange was responsible for issuing Fan Tokens for the Brazilian Football Team and a collection of NFTs in June 2021. Tokens were successful. And, according to the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF), the items sold out in 30 minutes.
More recently, at the end of January this year, the company announced that it intended to launch a cryptocurrency trading platform for Brazilians this February – which has yet to happen.
The initiative is part of the company’s international expansion strategy. In addition to Brazil, the Turkish platform also wants to enter the Spanish market.
Despite these ambitious plans, the company has been accused of not honoring its sponsorship agreements. As reported by Bloomberg, Sporting Lisboa, which had announced its partnership with Bitci in September, said it had made a “strategic misalignment”, according to a spokesman.
The contract was terminated because Bitci would not have made the payments, according to a source familiar with the matter. The company has since removed all references to Bitci from its products and the team’s website.
Likewise, Spezia, who currently play in Serie A in Italy, also ended their sponsorship contract. Bitci also started its partnership with Spezia in September 2021. The company did not, however, provide a justification for the termination.