People and Pop Culture

Serena Williams joining NFT platform Sorare as advisor

By Chris Smith
Williams will consult with Sorare on athlete relationships, diversity efforts and expansion into new sportsGETTY IMAGES

SERENA WILLIAMS has joined NFT fantasy sports platform Sorare as a board advisor. In the newly created role, Williams will consult with the company on athlete relationships, diversity efforts and expansion into new sports. “We see Serena as one of the most important figures in sports and culture, and we think she’s redefined what it means to modern athlete and entrepreneur,” said Sorare Head of Business Development MICHAEL MELTZER. “She has great insight into the U.S. market and the global market, having played all around world. We think she’ll be huge strategic addition to us.”

GOING BEYOND SOCCER: Sorare is a global fantasy soccer game that allows users to buy, sell and trade NFT player cards to assemble a virtual team. The company is now eyeing entry to new sports beyond soccer, particularly in the U.S., and Williams’ focus will include potential expansion into women’s sports. She will also advise on ways in which Sorare can derive additional value for athletes. Sorare had trading volume of $325M last year, and in September the France-based company raised a $680M Series B funding round led by Softbank, marking the largest-ever Series B in European history. Williams' husband, Reddit co-Founder ALEXIS OHANIANinvested in Sorare last year.

ADDING ON: Meltzer said the company will potentially bring on additional athlete advisors in the future: “Athletes are going to be a critical piece of our strategy because at the end of the day we’re selling player trading cards, so it’s really important for us to connect in a deep way with the athlete community.” He declined to comment on whether Williams will receive company equity as part of her advisory role.

Sorare, whose COO is former ESPN exec RYAN SPOON, just added a number of members to its exec team in N.Y. 

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