• NFT victory: master Magnus Carlsen chases an unrepeatable trophy

  • A chess tournament, the Meltwater Champions Chess Tour (MCCT), has announced that it will be minting Non-Forgible Token (NFT) trophies and collectibles to preserve the game’s most defining moments for all time.

    The winner of the MCCT will be awarded the NFT trophy, marking the mainstream cryptocurrency participation in the chess world. Grandmaster Magnus Carlsen and nine other professional chess players, including Wesley So, will compete in the event’s final.

    According to an official statement, Chess Champs will be minting two versions of the Champion’s Trophy NFT, allowing fans to obtain replicas of the trophy through an online auction. In addition, the company will also release a series of NFT collectibles that are attributed to “moves, moments and players” from the chess tour.

    Carlson’s interest in cryptocurrency dates back to a recent chess tournament hosted by the FTX cryptocurrency exchange, where the world champion won 0.6 bitcoin (BTC) along with a cash prize of $60,000.

    In addition to the prize, the chess community is exploring blockchain use cases to prevent cheating in online tournaments under COVID-19 restrictions. Parallel to the postponement of the 2020 Chess Candidates Championship in Ekaterinburg, Russia, World Chess has previously explored the possibility of moving the tournament online via blockchain technology.

    A report in September showed that tokenized sports collectibles projects raised a total of nearly $1 billion in a single week.

    Dapper Labs, the company offering tokenized basketball collectibles NBA Top Shot, announced a $250 million funding round, in addition to revealing 30x growth by 2021.

    Following close behind, Sorare, the NFT trading card marketplace, raised $680 million led by Japanese fintech giant SoftBank. Revised at a valuation of $4.3 billion, Sorare plans to expand its portfolio of NFTs for footballers by increasing its partnerships with football leagues and associations.

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