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MLS enters metaverse with GreenPark Sports

Social gaming developer will build digital environment for US soccer league.

25 February 2022 Steve McCaskill
MLS enters metaverse with GreenPark Sports

GreenPark Sports / Getty

  • Multi-year partnership reached with MLS and MLSPA
  • Fans will be able to create custom avatars and earn rewards
  • GreenPark Sports also works with NBA and LaLiga

Social sports gaming developer GreenPark Sports has agreed a multi-year partnership with Major League Soccer (MLS) and the Major League Soccer Players Association (MLSPA) to create a metaverse environment that will drive fan engagement.

GreenPark Sports’ application offers multiple fan ‘universes’ based on major sports and esports competitions in which users can play games, enter contests and collect items for their avatar.

Starting this season, MLS fans will be able to create avatars with officially licensed gear and compete in games and in-match challenges against friends, other fans of their favourite club, and against supporters of rival teams.

The partnership with the US soccer league means this experience can be infused with real-time match data to create live fan engagement events and parties, allowing fans to earn rewards such as merchandise and other prizes.

“MLS is excited to partner with GreenPark to bring new cutting-edge digital experiences to life for MLS fans around the globe,” says Chris Schlosser, senior vice president of emerging ventures at MLS.

“We have set up our emerging ventures group to help great young companies easily partner with MLS, our clubs and properties. GreenPark has a fantastic founding team, and we are proud to work closely with them in their quest to build the future of fandom.”

GreenPark is one of several firms banking on growing demand from sports fans for immersive, digitally-native experiences that comprise the ‘metaverse’ – a persistent, virtual environment that acts as a digital counterpart to the physical world.

The metaverse is an increasing area of interest for sports organisations and MLS joins the League of Legends Championship Series (LCS), Spanish soccer’s LaLiga and the National Basketball Association (NBA) as a GreenPark partner.

The Los Angeles-based firm raised US$31 million in a series B funding round last year and is looking at integrating non-fungible tokens (NFTs) into its platform.

“GreenPark continues to build and evolve the go-to virtual world for fans, one that celebrates, measures and rewards [fandom] and will drive newfound engagement and value for leagues,” said Tony Grillo, chief strategy officer at GreenPark Sports.

“With our new partnerships with MLS and the MLSPA, soccer fans can play and compete in a variety of social experiences augmented by live data. Fans can band together to prove their fandom and collect exclusive prizes on GreenPark’s mobile app. We are committed to building a one-stop rewarded fan experience and a multi-sport virtual community, and having MLS and its players join our roster accelerates this mission.”

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