To understand Web3, a good example is worth a thousand explanations. And Sorare is a perfect one.
“Amazing”, “incredible”, “a UFO”… Investors are unanimous. Sorare (the company) is what is called “the shot of a lifetime”. In a few years, with a valuation of 4.3 billion dollars, the company has become the most highly rated of French unicorns. Even better and even more exceptional in the land of unicorns: Sorare has been generating profits since its inception. A success story therefore, which like all good stories, had a lot of trouble at the start. When Nicolas Julia and Adrien Montfort, the two young co-founders, claimed to create the “world leader in entertainment”, no one believed it: “I don’t understand anything about your thing”, they often heard. Now that Web3 ignites curiosity, things have obviously changed. And to understand Sorare’s model is to understand what the Internet of tomorrow may look like.
Collectors, gamblers, gamers and football fans…
It’s true that, at the start, we don’t understand anything about Sorare (the game). For simplicity, Sorare mixes three models. That of Panini, those self-adhesive images that kids loved to collect, of Betclic, the sports betting site, and finally games of fantasy sports, where challenges are done based on the results of real teams on the field. So many markets that culminate at the top of the most lucrative, with turnovers of several hundreds of billions of dollars. Short. Sorare is a real trap for collectors, an Eden for gamblers, the Elysian fields for football fans.
NFT, blockchain, cryptocurrencies…
But the real secret weapon of Sorare is not even there. Sorare, it’s the success of a business that uses the blockchain, cryptocurrencies and NFT… In summary, this gives an online game (developed on the blockchain) where you buy, collect and play virtual cards with the effigy of football players (NFTs), and which allows betting, investing and speculating. The founders of Sorare pretend it’s not gambling. But this type of cryptogame still belongs to the category called “ play to earn » , to be translated as… « play to win money » . Now Sorare is attracting the most prestigious funds, and sports stars are becoming shareholders – France team striker Antoine Griezmann, FC Barcelona defender Gerard Pique. More recently, tennis player Serena Williams became a member of the startup’s board of directors.
So how did Sorare build her business on Web3? We give you 6 reasons.
1. Sorare has “blockchained” her business
Like any Web3 player, Sorare is based on a blockchain, the technology that made possible the advent of cryptocurrencies, and more recently that of NFTs. It makes it possible to store information in a decentralized and secure way. Sorare uses Ethereum, one of the most widely used blockchains in the world – and the most trusted, it is said.
2. Sorare has turned its clients into investors
In Web2, users produced content and/or data, but received no income from it. On the contrary, Web3 makes it possible to reward them for their contributions and to interest them in the success of the company. At the house of Sorareusers buy cards, but it is also somewhere an investment in the game for which they will get profits.
3. Sorare financialized the interactions
Web3 essentially works around monetary exchanges (preferably in crypto), contrary to the apparent free nature of the major Web2 platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Google), which are financed through advertising. The financialization of exchanges has the advantage of rewarding you for your contribution, but you must pay to participate.
4. Sorare knows how to remain a little mysterious
Web3 apps are initially a bit complex and mysterious. Their sites are often a little abstruse, their design a little primitive. It’s part of marketing. The goal is to create a feeling of belonging to a small club of insiders, who have spotted the rising thing before anyone else. The famous FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out, the fear of missing something) is complemented by the pride of being…
5. Sorare bets a lot on his communication
Advertising is so Web2. You haven’t seen a major Sorare poster campaign in the metro yet. The startup prefers to bet on its most active users (those who have understood the trick, see point number 4), who will exchange with each other on the networks, sponsor each other… Some are decked out with titles that set them apart. At Sorare, these are the “top managers” and the “ambassadors”. In other Web3 communities, the community is created before you even have the product.
6. Sorare has decentralized… but not too much
One of Web3’s ambitions is to give some semblance of power back to users. In the case of Sorare, this involves easy access to game data to be able to create apps and parallel games. But, make no mistake, this decentralization is limited. Users have no control over the rules of the original game, the “Mother Game”, nor over the governance of the company.
This article appeared in review 31 of DNA, SORARE, THE WEB COLLECTOR VERSIONavailable here.
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