Colombian football superstar James Rodríguez has found a new pitch: cryptocurrency. While best known for scoring goals and recording assists on the field, the frequent corporate spokesman will launch the “JR10 Token” this summer in a new blockchain venture.
Named for his initials and national team jersey number, the public sale of this digital coin will start on July 12 in partnership with SelfSell through the fintech startup’s blockchain-powered mobile app.
Photo: James Rodríguez, superstar midfielder for the Colombian national football team, at the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil. (Photo credit: Danilo Borges/copa2014.gov)
SelfSell is pushing the new coin to promote its core offering that allows the sale of cryptocurrencies through iOS and Android apps that are intended to represent “direct investments in people themselves,” according to the company.
The Bayern Munich midfielder, who was named to the UEFA Champions League team of the season this month, announced the launch of the cryptocurrency last week in a video message.
The message debuted during a presentation by SelfSell founder and CEO Yuan Li at the BlockShow 2018 in Berlin. “I have come to a new field,” said James in the video.
In the financial world, James has previously served as a pitchman for Cyprus-based financial markets trading platform Libertex. He also has sponsorship deals with Adidas, Calvin Klein, Chinese mobile giant Huawei, and Colombian mobile service and cable provider Claro.
In his home country, he also has his own J10 underwear brand with Bronzini and has appeared on product packaging and commercials for Nestle-branded chocolate drink Milo and popular local soft drink Pony Malta.
According to SelfSell, this will be “the first cryptocurrency launched by a football player on active duty, aiming to build stronger fan relations and create new growth driven power for global sport market.”
The company says that 160 million JR10 Tokens — 8% of the total issuance — will be “issued to James’ fans free of charge” in order to “create a rapidly growing JR10 fans community.”
The launch coincides with the final week of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, which will end with a final championship game on July 15.
While Colombia is not among the favorites to win the every-four-year football tournament, James Rodríguez rose to global superstardom during the last World Cup in 2014 when he led all scorers by netting six goals in just five games as Colombia had its best showing ever at the competition.