The world of talent development will soon be shaken up by the launch of TokenStars, the first blockchain-based celebrity management platform that applies decentralized scouting and community voting to ensure transparent engagement for millions of users: celebrities, fans, brands, and advertisers.
[Note: This is a sponsored article.]
A young person faces a lot of obstacles in becoming a star in their chosen field, such as sports and show business. It is true that such an endeavor takes a lot of hard work and perseverance, but it also takes a bit of luck and usually a fair amount of money.
Tennis is a perfect example of this. Say a child shows talent and a passion for tennis. While they may be willing to spend countless hours playing the game, it costs money to purchase equipment, hire coaches, have access to courts, pay for traveling and lodging at tournaments, and pay those medical bills for all those bumps and bruises. Maria Sharapova’s father famously worked as a dishwasher to pay the bills while she honed her craft.
Luck plays a hand as well, such as having a scout becoming aware of the young athlete or living in a country that facilitates the necessary training opportunities. However, young athletes across the world can now have their dreams come true with the launch of TokenStars, the first blockchain talent management agency that features decentralized scouting, promotion, and analysis.
The Current Talent Management Industry Leaves Few Opportunities for Many
It’s not an exaggeration to say that sports agencies are big business. Currently, the top ten talent management agencies (TMAs) have a whopping $25.3 billion in contracts under their control. This grand total represents 3,371 contracts signed and a yearly commission total of $1.19 billion.
The industry as a whole actually has a higher revenue total than the GDP of quite a few countries, such as Bahrain, Serbia, and Bolivia. Agencies have been extremely important in the development and success of many athletes. They pay to have the young athletes trained by seasoned coaches, not to mention managing a player’s career and finding them outside sponsorship and advertising opportunities.
Yet there are plenty of issues with the current state of sports talent management agencies. First is that a handful of companies dominate and control the entire industry. If an athlete does not accede to their wishes, such as attending specific tournaments or wanting to follow a different training regimen than the agency proscribes, then they risk losing the support and opportunities that the agencies afford.
Another major issue is that the vast majority of young athletes are ignored by these large talent agencies. A young person may live in a country where their chosen sport is not popular or the domestic market may be too small for the agency’s tastes. In such circumstances, the young athlete is left out in the cold despite the level of their talent. An athlete may also be considered not elite enough to be represented even though they have proven to be able to support themselves on the professional level.
However, such problems are resolved with TokenStars, the first blockchain talent management agency that seeks to tokenize celebrities, starting with athletes. Unlike traditional sports talent management agencies, TokenStars uses a decentralized approach when it comes to scouting, promoting, and analyzing athletes.
The goal of TokenStars is to find, fund, and promote talented youths when they’re at that critical junior age where they could begin to question their calling as they see how hard their pursuit of their passion could cost their family and friends due to the tremendous costs involved. For example, a young football player needs financial support and promotional resources to the tune of between $50,000 to $80,000 a year. TokenStars uses a decentralized approach to find and support these young athletes, giving them a much greater chance at professional success.
Decentralized Scouting, Promotion, and Analysis Will Transform the Industry
TokenStars marks a revolutionary approach to providing support and management services to athletes and celebrities. This platform uses tokens as an incentive and reward for interested participants. TokenStars is initially focusing on tennis due to the billion fans that the sport enjoys worldwide. After tennis, football will be added as a vertical.
The second stage of TokenStars’ roadmap will be the addition of poker, basketball, and hockey. Eventually, models, actors, and musical bands will be added to the construct. Each individual vertical (football, tennis, poker, etc.) will have its own token, such as tennis having ACE tokens and football having GOAL tokens. These tokens are based upon the Ethereum protocol and conform to the widely-used ERC20 standard. Tokens will be exchangeable under the STAR token index umbrella. Token holders can choose from three different roles: scout, promoter, or analyst.
TokenStars approaches sponsoring and nurturing young athletes in a manner that is remarkably different from the current TMAs that dominate the industry. One of the main differences is that TokenStars is fully decentralized, which helps unleash the full power of crowdsourcing utilized by the platform. Instead of a small group of full-time scouts, TokenStars uses a global network of 600 part-time scouts that are financially motivated to find talented young athletes.
Scouts will earn tokens when they submit a player’s application to the platform and will gain additional tokens if the application is approved, if the scout assists with the player’s offline assessment, and if the player signs a contract with TokenStars after being selected. In addition, the ACE (tennis-specific) platform of TokenStars uses the InStat system to fully crunch the data on each prospect.
Promoters have multiple ways to earn ACE (or other sport-specific) tokens. The goal of promoters is to manage the player’s fan pages on social media, act as public relations representatives to the media, and seek out advertisers who wish to use the athlete for their various media campaigns. Promoters will be rewarded with ACE tokens for managing individual fan social media accounts, updating the ACE newsfeed, securing publication in unique media outlets, referring potential advertisers who pass an initial screening, and for referring an advertiser who signs a contract.
The decentralization of TokenStars is fully realized through the actions of the platform’s community. The token holders have significant influence upon the management of the blockchain agency. Every token holder is considered an analyst and gets a vote. Each token represents one vote. The community votes on whether to sign a player, to renew their contract, to terminate their contract, to renew or replace the Head of Scouting after a one-year term, to replace an underperforming promoter, and to suggest any proposals made to the operating team. This decentralized system allows the entire TokenStars community to police the platform and ensure its continued health through group consensus.
Use Cases for TokenStars Tokens
Tokens issued by TokenStars have multiple applications. They are used to interact with the ACE or other sport-specific verticals, allow members to express their opinions through voting, are used a form of settlement, and power the ACE platform’s compensation system. Tokens can also be used in many unique ways.
ACE Tokens can be used to pay sponsorship fees, get an endorsement from an athlete for the token holder’s business or non-profit cause (can be through social media posts, photo advertising, or video advertising), get a training session with the athlete (either one-on-one or with a group), and even being able to personally interact with the athlete. This interaction can be through text chat, video chat, or an exclusive meeting in the real world. ACE tokens can even be used to buy merchandise, autographed items, or tickets to a sporting event.
TokenStars’ ACE Token Sale
The ACE token sale for TokenStars began on August 31st. The value of the tokens should increase in value as the ACE platform is a proven business model (the talent management agency) that has achieved great success. Thus, the project risks are only in the execution and not in the technical barriers or lack of product-market fit.
TokenStars has already proven its ACE business concept as they have signed a notable professional player, Veronika Kudermetova, who has won 19 international tournaments and is number 66 in the WTA rankings in doubles and in the top 200 in singles. They have also assembled a great advisory board, including Anastasia Myskina (number 2 in WTA ranking and Roland Garros champion), Sergey Demekhine (coach of Vera Zvonareva, who is number 2 in the WTA) and Maya Kurilova (ex-Operational Director at Octagon and boasts 11 years of experience in tennis talent management).
TokenStars marks a revolutionary new step in talent management by offering hope to young athletes all over the world who have been left forgotten by the current TMA system. Its decentralized nature allows the community to find and support young athletes, giving them a chance to succeed at the professional level.
Not only are the young athletes rewarded, but the scouts and promoters have a vested financial interest in finding the best players and doing everything possible to help them achieve their dreams. As the overall TokenStars platform expands into other sports and celebrity arenas, the tokens existing under the STAR umbrella will become greatly desirable and more valuable over time.
Do you think that TokenStars will make it easier for young talent to receive the support and promotion they need to succeed? Let us know in the comments below.
Images courtesy of TokenStars