First cards released in January 2020 will feature iconic players including Honus Wagner, Mickey Mantle, Kobe Bryant, Charles Barkley and Shaquille O'Neal; as well as rising stars Zion Williamson, Christian Pulisic, Lamar Jackson and Kaapo Kakko
IRVING, Texas, Dec. 19, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Panini America, the world's largest licensed sports and entertainment collectibles company and the exclusive trading card manufacturer of the NFL, NFLPA, NBA, NBPA, College athletics and NASCAR, announced today that it will introduce the first officially-licensed trading cards featuring blockchain technology. The release of the blockchain trading cards will incorporate Panini's popular National Treasures design and will feature 100 athletes including: Honus Wagner, Mickey Mantle, Aaron Judge, Shohei Ohtani, Mariano Rivera, Kobe Bryant, Zion Williamson, Charles Barkley, Stephen Curry, Allen Iverson, Shaquille O'Neal, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Patrick Mahomes, Tom Brady, Lamar Jackson, Drew Brees, Barry Sanders, Peyton Manning, Emmitt Smith, Christian Pulisic, Neymar, Diego Maradona, Gareth Bale and Kaapo Kakko to name a few.
"We were very thorough and a number of factors were considered in selecting the players that will be released in our Panini trading cards that utilize blockchain technology. There is not a more iconic trading card than the rare 1909-11 Honus Wagner T206 baseball card. To be able to produce the first ever Honus Wagner blockchain card, along with all of these other players utilizing blockchain technology and ensuring that these cards will now live forever in the digital realm is truly an honor," said Mark Warsop, CEO of Panini America.
Panini's blockchain trading cards will launch in early January 2020 on www.paniniamerica.net and will be sold in an auction format in U.S. dollars as opposed to a digital currency with 10 cards being released each week. The blockchain asset will live on a closed Panini platform where sports fans and collectors can buy, sell and store their blockchain trading card assets. Each card is a unique one-of-one card that not only includes a blockchain digital asset – but will be accompanied by a physical version of the card that includes an autograph of the respective player and in some cases will incorporate a piece of memorabilia. The blockchain asset will be an exact representation of the physical version of the card.
Panini also plans to release blockchain versions of cards in upcoming Panini physical trading card products in the NFL, NBA and MLBPA. With some cards selling on the secondary market for six figures, and as the popularity of trading cards continues to grow in the global marketplace, the blockchain technology also ensures another level of authentication for Panini's products and high-value cards.
"We have spent years researching and exploring the best possible way to incorporate blockchain into our trading cards as another level of authentication – as well as the best way to introduce blockchain to sports fans and collectors. We believe our platform and the fact that the cards will be sold in U.S. dollars rather than a digital currency will help fans and collectors have a better understanding, knowing that their cards utilize blockchain as another level of authenticity," added Warsop.
The Panini Group, established more than 50 years ago in Modena, Italy, has subsidiaries throughout Europe, Latin America and the United States. Panini is the world leader in officially licensed collectibles and is the most significant publisher of collectibles in the U.S., with official licenses for NFL, NFLPA, NBA, MLBPA, College, FIFA, Disney, Epic Games and other key properties from many other licensors. Panini is also the exclusive trading card and sticker partner of the Pro Football Hall of Fame and Pop Warner Little Scholars, Inc. Panini has distribution channels in more than 100 countries and employs a staff of over 800. For more information visit us at www.paniniamerica.net, www.paninigroup.com or http://blog.paniniamerica.net/. You can also follow Panini America on social media platforms Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram.
Tracy Hackler, Panini America
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SOURCE Panini America