Omniverse Sports League | Monetizing Athletes Utilizing The Power Of Web 3.0 Technology
In today’s Web3 video, we’re with Justin Lacche, the Commissioner of the Omniverse Sports League which has more than one hundred and thirty (130) athletes and E-sport gamers in thirty one countries. The league is providing these athletes and gamers with a historic shot at fully realizing their sports and economic potential, through the innovative use of Web3 technology.
Justin Lacche Omniverse Sports League Profile
Justin has named by Business Insider as one of Nike’s top twenty executive talents. He is now leading other emerging market companies, has a proven track record as a growth executive in omnibus companies and is a hyperglot, which is someone who is fluent in more than six languages.
Justin’s first comment is to make it clear there is nothing special about himself (although others such as ourselves may disagree). He comes from a very poor Italian family and is very grateful to have amazing family, friends and mentors from around the world, who have helped shape the person he has become.
At the same time, he is unapologetically very serious about his craft and spends every waking second, even sometimes asleep subliminally learning, Web 3.0. The key message from today’s interview is that it is not about somebody who’s been born into anything (although that is okay too). Web 3.0 technology is about democratizing so that the best ideas, win, irrespective of where you are on the planet, no matter what your last name is, no matter the color of your skin, your faith, who you’re married to or the speed of your internet connection.
How Justin Lacche Got Into Web 3.0
Having grown up in Redmond where Microsoft took off, Justin got an early understanding of the power of technology and how it was a great equalizer. Add to this, a mix of his poor background and an understanding that in the United States, if you work hard enough you are rewarded with more opportunities, meant when the Bitcoin white paper came out, it resonated with him immediately. He especially loved the concept of there being no single point of failure, as compared to Web 2.0 licenses where you could have an error downloading.
Then, as I grew into his career at Nike, leading global teams, he found that there was a similar hunger across the world for amazing innovation despite many of his teammates simply not having the luxury of living in a country with a free market or having reliable hardware and software.
When this all came to a head during covid which affected a number of families, Justin was one of only ten people allowed to remain at Nike on campus. So for a year and a half, he was alone in five buildings and the thing that he learnt from virtual teams was the importance of not only having Web 3.0 and blockchain and innovations tied to blockchain-based technology, but also a real world need to operationalize it in real world stores and real world offices.
Until, there are real world examples of use of this new technology, such as if you go down to a farmer’s market in Sydney and can buy some local food in an alt coin, it is not reaching its potential.
This really motivated Justin to continue to do his part to really see this decade through where he believes in a world where it’s not replacing currency but as an alternative option. He believes that in our decade we’re going to see a major paradigm shift and that is a call to action he can’t ignore.
What Inspired Justin To Create The Omniverse Sports League?
When Justin first saw blockchain as a code versus older single point to failure enterprise code, he recognized breathtaking elegance and how efficient, much more democratized, much more open this new Web3 technology was and how the decentralized nodes actually empowered software.
He sees Web 3.0 as a true opportunity to build platforms and not just layer and scotch tape.
To give a real world example, of the thirty one countries the Omniverse Sports League has athletes from, one of them is Ukraine. They also have athletes who want a solar panel. Because there’s no actual infrastructure in a solar panel, the athlete can go online and code blockchain code in production and then can then monetize with tokens? What other type of wartime situation opportunities in human history have been available like this?
How Is The Omniverse Sports League Honoring Cultures?
A big part of the omniverse Sports League is to honor cultures. There exists in Web3 and the metaverse the opportunity for native people to design their own culture, not as a historical museum piece but as a relevant real world narrative.
The dynamic feature for the United States are those human rights opportunities that are not only empowering to all cultures, but for the very cultures themselves. It’s reinventing their youth. If you do it right, it’s mindblowing. In the old days, the good old days of two years ago, we’d have to have a team that did culture, a team that did economics, a team that did taxes. Now you can layer it all on top of each other and under the decentralized movement. It’s all about human potential rights and limitless possibilities.
How Did The Omniverse Sports League Start?
The biggest catalyst for the Omniverse Sports League was coronavirus. Unfortunately at this time, in Australia, Asia and all around the world, many small sports leagues went backrupt.
Justin, working in a Furtune 500 company with a love of cricket and handball, two internationally big sports, saw a number of smaller leagues in these sports face bankruptcy. Seeing amazing athletes who are world class and not having a job to go to, he couldn’t stand for that.
So Justin went to work with his mates to launch the Omniverse Sports League, which was about sustaining these professional, real world sports teams, but then, at the same time, using the power of Web 3.0 and the metaverse to allow athletes and coaches to monetize their own image and following.
The league has six professional sports teams that can currently compete in Web 3.0 metaverse sports, including cricket, soccer, handball and beach volleyball. All teams are professionally sanctioned.
The league is like a college athletic program in that their six teams don’t compete against each other. They’re under the same brand and insurance policy but do different sports, meaning they can have decentralized matches all around the world.
The reason why the league picked these sports are that they are minor league in America meaning a very low entrance barrier, but popular internationally and Olympic sports meaning they could immediately become certified as the professional. These same teams can compete the same week in flavors of Web3, metaverse and blockchain gaming. Not every athlete is a gamer but approximately thirty percent (30%) of them are. The remaining seventy percent (70%) of gamers are tied to the athletes.
For the e-gaming sports side, while the blockchain graphics are not as good as some of the e-sport games in Web 2.0, the Omniverse Sports League makes up for this with the protection of information and metadata and tokenization.
So for example, the league could hold a soccer match in war timeWestern Ukraine. The athletes will then do some gaming on their own that the league certifies and sanctions through its brand and then the intellectual property, the tokenization that metadata is Vladimir Putin proof in that Moscow can’t hack it. So that’s a very exciting use case to prove out.
The hardest part of the league formation formation has been twenty eight teams applied but only six have been accepted so far. Justin wants to make sure the quality is sustained and that’s hard for him because he would love to quadruple their size, as their investors would. The goal is to build a sustainable, profitable model.
Right now, their goal in the second full year of the league is to have these six teams have tournaments for fifty weeks of the year in the real world and Web 3.0. These tournaments can be held anywhere in the world and are to be played at the highest level possible with international recognition. In terms of standard, the real world teams are currently second division quality while the e-gamers are first division.
How Does The Interaction Between The Athletes and E-Gamers Work?
The best way to explain the interaction between real world athletes and e-gamers is by way of an example. The Omniverse Sports League’s branded cricket team is called the Beeverton Badhaus, one of the longest established American cricket teams having been established for over 15 years.
The Beeverton Badhaus can for example have a scheduled real life indoor cricket match this week because the rain is too heavy to play outside. In the same week, players from the Beeverton Badhaus who are also e-gamers, along with additional e-gamers to make up the rest of the side will play a Web 3.0 cricket match against an e-sport cricket team based in England .
How Do The Athletes and E-Gamers Make Money?
The athletes and e-gamers make their money through the power of Web 3.0. While the coaches, athletes and gamers are part of the Omniverse Sports League brand, they are free to make money in a variety of different ways as long as they adhere to the ethical standards of the league.
This means athletes and gamers can cut their own sponsorship deals and release their own NFTs. The league even educates them on how to do this and do not take a cut of monies raised.
The league makes its money through gate takings and the release of their own NFTs.
This is so much different to the traditional sports model where athletes sign up to play a competition and cannot make any outside money unless sanctioned by the league.
In Justin’s model, it is dencentralized so instead of the league giving athletes a full paycheck, which for second division teams wouldn’t be much, they instead decentralize the wealth with aim of every athlete having a sustainable full time income while at the same time the league being profitable. To achieve this vision requires the buy-in of everyone involved, which is why the league is expanding slowly.
Can You Give An Example Of How The Omniverse Sports League Model Compares With What’s Happening In Golf With The PGA Model and the LIV Model
The LIV model in golf right now is effectively forcing players to choose to play in either LIV sanctioned tournaments or PGA tournaments.
The Omniverse Sports Model is the opposite. Instead of closing doors for athletes its want to provide them with the greatest opportunity to compete in as many quality tournaments as possible, whether that be real world or e-sports. Their goal is to increase viewership and participation in a sport so as to increase the total amount of revenue available to everyone, irrespective as to whether or not they are part of the league rather than trying to force fans to take sides.
By providing a platform where coaches, players and gamers are treated right and can make a good living, they will want to come back. And if they want to join a different league the Omniverse Sports League won’t stand in their way. It is not about micromanaging participants, it is about trust, integrity and negotiation to get the best result for everyone involved, using a Web 3.0 model that can scale.
So How Did Omniverse Sports League Evolve So Quickly That Second Division Athletes Could Make A Sustainable Income
The Omniverse Sports League had three clear objectives in mind to help become profitable early on. The first was to tap into a connections Justin had built up at Nike, one of the largest sporting organizations in the world, with the blessing of Nike.
Secondly, it was not immediately about wealth creation but rather reducing friction points that were causing problems at minor league level.
The third objective was to keep sport going at the second division level during the pandemic. An unfortunate reality during covid was there were a number of stadiums with no one there. So the league had a number of people very eager both in outdoor venues and stadiums to host tournaments.
By tapping into each of these onjectives, the league has been able to build wealth in a decentalized manner through the use of a common brand that maximizes visibility, intellectual property, statistics, trophies, tournaments, their players, their stories and their logos. What they found is it is almost stunning how much money can be made when these are aligned
What Advice Would You Give You To Other Leagues Looking To Remain Viable?
It is scary but I would advise struggling sports leagues to do things exactly the opposite of what they are used to.
The first thing you should do is find out how the lowest level professional in your league can make the most amount of money. They have fought all the way of their career just to get on the roster so how can your league make sure they are earning a living wage. This then opens the power of Web 3.0.
The league can then needs to work out how do we tell the story and empower our athletes to monetize their own image, their own story, their own training. How can the league think outside the box for how their story can be told in ways that have never been done before in sports.
So for example, you could start with the athlete and her or his hometown. How can they be sponsored there or how can they tell their story in the part of the country that they came from. If you start to really care about how you can then monetize it from that scalable side, you can then build a blueprint on the technology side such as with Nfts and metadata and with ways to connect with athletes, and even those athletes could do coaching and clinics. You could then roll them into a larger team or sports brand.
It’s counterintuitive because in today’s model, if you were just getting out of business school you would be thinking you need to raise thirty million dollars to make it work. That means your going to have to have bare bones payments.
These days, its about how do we have streaming, monetization, tokenization and actually listen to the athletes needs, but then, at the same time build a common brand and blueprint for beach volleyball tournament. That standard could be we want to be about health and wellness, support the ecology, support a healthy planet. You could be about anti-pollution, anti-plastic on the beach. You may want renewable resources. You may want to have diversity, equality, inclusion and only sign up athletes that abide by each of these goals.
In return, you then empower the athlete to monetize for themselves off the back of the high quality reputation of the league. The league can educate the athlete, make it clear they believe in them and help them to obtain a living wage doing what they love. It is about embracing this dencentralized economic paradigm.
It is about the league talking to its potential athletes and saying you can honor your culture, your language, you’re, heritage, you’ beliefs, and you can play your sport and here are ways to make money. At the same time, all we ask is that you be a good person and abide by our ethics.
What Are The Omniverse Sports Leagues Ethical Rules Around Gamers?
The Omniverse Sports League’s rules for gamers is even if you don’t play the sport, you still have to suit up every week wherever you live. You don’t get to watch the game drinking beer and eating junk food. You are expected to live like an athlete, even if it’s only for the sake of your own motivation.
On the flipside for athletes, even if they have no interest in technology, the league shows them the actual lines of code in the belief that whether they or their younger siblings or parents, or grandparents or their community is talking about a blockchain, it will evangelize some down.
What is also interesting is gamers who also have a passion in helping say wildlife in the ocean, or renewable energy or water conservation, they can combine this passion with their e-sports and raise funding that way.
Have You Learned Anything From The Athlete’s Coaches and Gamers?
According to Justin, when you live these principles and paradigm shift is is amazing how much innovation people come up with because they look at a differently. Justin has learned so much more from the athletes, coaches and gamers than he’s been able to teach them because of just the cultural way of problem solving, the boldness of non-filtering and taking a chance.
It’s interesting in Web 3.0, whether it’s on the real world side that uses technology or purely the technology itself, there’s a very heavy entrance barrier to be successful because the leg work, the commitment you have to really put in.
That’s why the Omniverse Sports League is not one of these companies of bad actors that you read who go to jail because they sell some bad altcoin. The amount of hours spent actually evangelizing to Justin’s own ecosystem is probably sixty percent (60%) of his job, and his job is to actually grow the sport. So it requires stamina.
At the same time when you build that understanding of why things are decentralized or important, and you demystify it, you build something for the rest of the decade that I think will not only change this sport but also family businesses and cultures, there are multiple opportunities that are impossible to quantify and that is the real power of the decentralized paradigm.
How Can Someone Get Involved In The Omniverse Sports League
The easiest way to get involved in the Omniverse Sports League is to go to their website at omniversesportsleague.com or look up Justin Lacche on Linked In. It doesn’t necessarily have to be about sport. Even if you want to find out how your school or local hospital or your energy system can be democratized and monetized he is happy to chat.
Sport, in its 5,000 year history has always been a great equalizer throughout human history, with many of its learnings applicable to other businesses. The Web 3.0 application Justin is talking about is to minimize friction points, remove artificial bureaucracies and empower people all over the world.
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