Got some spare Bitcoins that are burning a hole in your digital pocket? Good news! You will soon be able to put them toward watching DeMarcus Cousins and the NBA’s Sacramento Kings.
As of March, the Kings will be the first pro-sports franchise to accept Bitcoins for ticket sales and team merchandise. It’s hard to imagine loads of NBA fans suddenly buying tickets and jerseys using the virtual currency, as the Kings are well aware. But it’s just another big public step for a team that’s trying to be on the cutting edge of tech use in sports.
The Sacramento Kings’ new ownership prides itself on being particularly tech-savvy. “I want to make the Kings the poster child for the use of big data,” Kings owner Vivek Ranadivé recently told National Journal. Hopping on the Bitcoin bandwagon is an obvious nod to that tech culture.
The digital currency is “yet another way” to cater to the team’s tech-oriented fans, says Kings President Chris Granger. At least one group of fans has been explicitly clamoring for the Kings to accept Bitcoins. “My kids would go to games and ask why we didn’t accept Bitcoin,” Ranadivé told ESPN.
As of Thursday morning, one Bitcoin is worth $937.45 USD on Mt. Gox, the self-proclaimed world’s largest Bitcoin exchange. The price of Bitcoin has been quite volatile over the last year, but more and more U.S. businesses are starting to accept the currency. Earlier this month, Overstock.com became the first major online retailer to allow Bitcoin payments.
Next up for the Kings? According to Ranadivé, the team is beginning to explore what it can do with Google Glass.