DraftKings, the Boston-based sports betting company, said Wednesday it will launch a non-fungible token marketplace that allows users to buy, sell, and trade digital collectibles, representing the company’s first major push beyond gaming.
The marketplace, which plans to start later this summer, will partner with Autograph, the digital collectible company cofounded by Tom Brady. DraftKings will be the exclusive distributor of sports NFTs in Autograph’s collection, which includes memorabilia from Tiger Woods, Wayne Gretzky, and Naomi Osaka.
Initially, users will be required to purchase NFTs in US dollars, a company spokesman said.
The marketplace represents DraftKings ambitions to grow beyond a fantasy sports company. In recent years, it has branched out into sports betting, online casino gaming, and media.
Matt Kalish, the cofounder and president of DraftKings, said in a statement that the launch of the exchange allows the company to take advantage of the booming NFT market.
“DraftKings Marketplace will sit at the center of this technological and cultural phenomenon,” he said. “This initial vision in collaboration with Autograph, and its coveted collection of official digital collectibles, is a vital first step as we enter the emergent NFT market.”
While the partnership starts with sports NFTs, it could expand into other areas, including entertainment, the company said. Autograph recently partnered with Lionsgate to create digital collectibles from its library of TV shows and movies, including “The Hunger Games,” “Mad Men,” and “The Twilight Saga.”