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Sports Illustrated turns to blockchain and NFTs to disrupt ticketing sector

Box Office by SI Tickets promises capability and cost benefits to sporting events.

4 May 2023 Steve McCaskill

Sports Illustrated

  • SI Tickets launched in 2021
  • NFTs will provide engagement and revenue opportunities

Sports Illustrated Tickets (SI Tickets) is launching a ‘Box Office’, non-fungible token (NFT) based ticketing and event management platform for the sports industry.

The publishing icon launched SI Tickets in 2021, hoping to use the strength of its brand to inspire consumer confidence in the secondary ticket market.

Now, it is counting on the functionality of the blockchain to attract event organisers and venue operators of all sizes to its platform, promising additional engagement and revenue opportunities.

The Box Office self-service platform was built with Web 3.0 specialist ConsenSys and is powered by Polygon’s blockchain technology, promising a more flexible, scalable and cost-effective way to manage inventory and customer interactions.

The unique selling point is the ‘Super Ticket’ NFT product, which allows video highlights, exclusive offers and loyalty benefits to be tied to a ticket, and can be activated before, during and after a live event – strengthening customer relationships. Blockchain also provides greater visibility over resale.

“From the moment we launched our global event marketplace, which now boasts 50 million tickets to over 250,000 sports, concerts and shows, we have been preparing to enter and disrupt the primary ticket market,” said David Lane, chief executive of SI Tickets.

“The existing self-service event management sites haven’t evolved fast enough, as they can only list events and provide software to scan a barcode.

“Blockchain is the future of ticketing, and now owners, promoters, hosts and attendees have access to an advanced ticketing experience that transforms the antiquated barcode into engaging and collectible content.”

Ticketing has long been touted as one of the most compelling use cases of blockchain technology in sport, offering additional security and management benefits. In addition to the practical advantages, the natural scarcity of tickets means there is scope for digital collectibles, such as the commemorative stubs created by Ticketmaster and the National Football League (NFL).

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