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Metaverse startup to open St. Pete office

Veronica Brezina



A conceptual rendering of a stadium on Metasport Arena's platform. All images were provided.

A company creating a metaverse world – where people can livestream sports, engage with their favorite teams and acquire real estate around stadiums and arenas – will be establishing a St. Pete hub. 

“We’ve known web3 and the metaverse are taking off very well in South Florida, but we have a network of connections in St. Petersburg, and we want to build a presence here,” said St. Petersburg resident Piotr Smeder, the co-founder and head of partnerships at Metasport Arena.

Founded in October 2021 by Julien Sevat, Metasport Arena has roughly 15-20 employees who are from or based in Poland (where Smeder is from), Spain, France, India, Singapore and the U.S. 

The group is behind Sam Arena, the first sports and entertainment binance smart chain (BSC)-based metaverse allowing users to share and earn native SAM tokens and real estate.

“We are focused on sport entities and real estate, and we have approached sports teams to bring their arenas into our metaverse. We’d assume the fanbase would come and as an incentive, we would give the sports team land around their stadium that they could distribute to users and leverage,” Smeder said. 

A conceptual rendering of a mall complex that could be built in Metasport Arena’s platform.  

He said Metasport Arena, which is completely bootstrapped, is currently in discussions with several sports teams, including major European soccer leagues.

Earlier this month, Metasport Arena hit a major milestone that will take it a step further to achieve its goal. 

Brian Esposito, who founded a holding company of more than 85 entities and recently joined Metasport Arena as the head of strategy, helped Metasport Arena secure a strategic partnership with ESTV, which claims to have established the world’s first 24/7 live linear esports channel. 

The agreement with California-based ESTV will allow ESTV to bring its digital assets onto MSA’s marketplace, according to Metasport Arena’s announcement Sept. 1. 

“Thanks to our partnership, Metasport Arena is creating a new kind of social experience that unites fans to watch all of ESTV’s action in the metaverse. Now inclusive and immersive experiences connect our viewers across 100 countries thanks to Metasport Arena,” ESTV Founder and CEO Eric Yoon said in a statement. “As we expand our fall line up to include all college esports conferences and launch a new Simulation Football channel, Metasport Arena will be instrumental in improving and enriching community viewing for loyal fans in our global esports communities.”

Yoon, who also serves as an esports advisor for the National Football League (NFL) Alumni Association where he activates the esports activity for NFL alumni, joined Metasport Arena as an advisor. 

Down to the finish line 

Metasport Arena is looking to raise $1 million. Smeder said it’s currently valued at $9 million.  

Metasport Arena has multiple potential revenue streams, including converting each sitting space in stadiums into NFTs (non-fungible tokens) and creating new engagement and revenue streams for clubs. The company can benefit from a profit-sharing model, digital marketing and sponsorships, land development and a full digital marketplace that would allow the company to receive a profit from any NFT sales.

Smeder said the company is also in talks with a peer-to-peer sports betting company that complies with regulatory rules.

“We are excited about bringing new experiences in the future with may be meet-and-greets and opportunities for fans to play against their favorite athlete,” Smeder said, adding that he would love to engage with local sports teams such as the Tampa Bay Lightning, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Rowdies and Tampa Bay Rays.  

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