The SailGP race organisation has announced the formation of a new SailGP fan-owned racing team across Bermuda and the Caribbean.
The new Caribbean & Bermudian team hopes to be the tenth team in the league and to participate in Season 4, scheduled to open on 17-18 June 2023 with the Chicago Sail Grand Prix at Navy Pier, and includes one event held in Bermuda in May 2024.
The unique feature of the team announcement is in its formation as a ‘fan-owned’ organisation using a Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO) built on the NEAR blockchain.
The fan-owned team will be limited to 2,000 accredited investors.
The sports team’s owners will be able to vote on decisions like team names, new flag design representing overall territory, and even team athlete selection. Fan owners will also be able to help make decisions on boat livery, fan benefits and access, sponsorship, management, team business decisions, and more.
Fans will also be able to own a seasonal membership pass through the purchase and holding of a Non-fungible token (NFT). This NFT provides season pass holders access to community as well as governance but not equity.
SailGP and NEAR want to lead the way in creating the first professional sports team fully owned and operated by a DAO, and show how a fan-governed team can be established in the world of professional sport.
This new team structure has required the SailGP organisation (founded by Larry Ellison and Russell Coutts) to update the SailGP Participation Agreement to allow such a blockchain-based form of organization to join the league.
The Caribbean & Bermudian team has been launched by David Palmer and his team of founders at Bernoulli | Locke.
The Fan-Owned team’s territory will encompass Bermuda and the Caribbean islands in a concept similar to the West Indies cricket team or the Pacific Islanders rugby team – with all involved nations competing together under a common flag.
The team will have to comply with the nationality rules set out under SailGP’s Participation Agreement, which require developing nations like Bermuda and the Caribbean to have four nationals on board in a six-person crew configuration.
There are two main funding requirements for the Fan-Owned Team – firstly the team must pay the Team Ownership Fee, as well as funding annual operating costs for two seasons. Only by meeting these requirements will the team be allowed to form.
The immediate ambition is for the Fan-Owned Team to be on the start line for Season 4 on June 2023. But the formation of the team depends on it satisfying SailGP’s Participation Agreement.
Founded by David Palmer, Bernoulli | Locke specializes in creating partnerships and experiences facilitated by Web3.
NEAR blockchain an energy efficient, complete blockchain ecosystem, is a deep partner of SAILGP.
The NEAR Protocol is a software that aims to incentivize a network of computers to operate a platform for developers to create and launch decentralized applications built around a network of computers and its native cryptocurrency, the NEAR token.
The existing SailGP teams will compete for the Dubai Sail Grand Prix presented by P&O Marinas on 12-13 November at Mina Rashid, to complete 2022.
2023 will see the league head to Singapore, Sydney and Christchurch before the Grand Final in San Francisco in May.