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  1. Analysis
September 17, 2020

Sports fans score with new rewards offering from Socios.com

By Evie Rusman

Sports rewards credit cards have been around for some time now, with the Capital One Savor Card and Citi Premier Card being staple choices. However, blockchain-based fan voting and rewards app Socios.com promises to bring something new to the table. Evie Rusman reports

In August, blockchain fintech provider and creator of Socios.com, Chiliz, announced the launch of the app’s first Visa debit card.

With the tagline ‘I Am More Than A Fan’, the card promises to allow users to strengthen and increase their fan status while gaining access to other benefits.

Speaking about the app’s new offering, Alexandre Dreyfus, CEO and founder of Chiliz and Socios.com, says: “The Socios. com Visa debit card is the last mile between the club and its fans, through which fans can enjoy even greater recognition – receiving financial boosts and reward points while boosting their fan status for making purchases linked to the clubs they love.”

So far, Socios.com enables users to vote in club polls and earn rewards through digital assets known as Fan Tokens. Its partners include FC Barcelona, which recently launched its $BAR Fan Token, as well as Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain, Athlético de Madrid, AS Roma, Galatasaray, CA Independiente, UFC and e-sports team OG.

How does it work?

The card is powered by open banking platform Railsbank, and will be available to all Socios.com users. It will initially be available in 26 countries in the European Economic Area, before expanding to additional markets.

Louisa Murray, global head of sales at Railsbank, says: “Fintech and football together, the dream ticket! We are very excited that Chiliz and Socios.com have chosen the Railsbank platform from which to launch this very exciting product, and we will be working very closely with the team to ensure that it is a great success.

“This is a great example of when we say that any company or product can be a fintech. It also illustrates how fintech can liberate so many aspects of life and be a key part in the development of society.”

Rewards

Through the card, users will be able to make deposits into their euro or sterling wallet on Socios.com, as well as top up balances and pay for goods and services.

In addition, for every purchase made, the cardholder will have access to financial rewards and club-related benefits. For example, a fan using the card to purchase goods of an official club sponsor will receive cashback in the form of a Chiliz ($CHZ) deposit into their Socios.com account.

Fans can then use the $CHZ to purchase fan tokens on the app, allowing them to increase their voting weight in polls and boost their fan status. The idea is to increase their chances of accessing rewards.

Fans will receive an entry into that day’s $CHZ airdrop, with a winning value of over €100 equivalent, and leaderboard points that will further increase their chances of accessing club rewards.

For transactions in the stadium or in sports bars or shops within 5km of the stadium on match day, fans can also receive similar rewards and incentives.

Examples of rewards include:

  • All Socios.com Visa debit card holders will be eligible for $CHZ cashback rewards on every purchase;
  • Fan Tokens holders will get extra $CHZ rewards when shopping at teams’ official outlets or participating team sponsor outlets;
  • Cardholders will collect app-wide loyalty Fan Tokens (Socios United) and, if eligible, Fan Leaderboard points once they are live on the app;
  • Holders will also receive a unique global ID number linked to their KYC-verified Socios.com ID. This will allow fans to redeem club and sponsor-related rewards and discounts. The feature will be visible within the Socios.com app.

In certain locations, the card can also act as ticket entry to the stadium, whereby the user’s phone and card become the ticket with the ID-secured Socios.com. Users will have access to the Socios.com Visa debit card by the end of the summer, with a roll out to follow during the third quarter of 2020 and beyond.

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