Michael Jordan’s Solana Athlete App HEIR Drops First NFTs
NBA legend Michael Jordan is making moves in Web3, including December’s announcement of HEIR, a Solana-based platform that aims to connect professional athletes with their fans. Today, HEIR launched its first NFT collection to bring “founding” users into the upcoming platform.
HEIR’s 6 Rings NFTs are inspired by Jordan’s storied career in the league, as he won six NBA championships with the Chicago Bulls in the 1990s. The startup launched 10,010 total Solana NFTs at a price of 2.3 SOL ($221) apiece—an homage to Jordan’s jersey number—via the Magic Eden marketplace. About 4,400 of the NFTs have been minted as of this writing.
Each 6 Rings NFT designates the holder as a “founding fan,” providing access to the upcoming platform that connects athletes and their fans within “Huddles,” or communities that allow a limited number of users. Huddle members will get access to exclusive content from each athlete, as well as ask-me-anything sessions, merchandise, and more.
6 Rings NFT public mint is now live.
Head to https://t.co/xfxCemaytz or https://t.co/BPt03kX2Vg to get yours.@MagicEden_NFT pic.twitter.com/5uhEaTeOLv
— HEIR (@Heir_Company) March 3, 2022
The firm has yet to reveal which athletes will be featured on the Solana-powered platform, but in a Twitter Space held today, the team suggested that NBA legends and current players will be involved. The official HEIR Discord server further notes that players from the high school level up to professionals will be included.
HEIR was revealed in mid-December as a collaboration between Michael Jordan and his son Jeffrey Jordan, with Jeffrey listed as a co-founder for the fan engagement platform alongside Jeron Smith (ex-Nike) and marketing consultant Daniel George.
The firm raised $10 million in seed funding in a round led by Thrive Capital, alongside participants including Solana Ventures, Bulls star Lonzo Ball, and Reddit co-founder and Seven Seven Six founder Alexis Ohanian, and New York Knicks Executive Vice President William Wesley.
Jeffrey Jordan told Decrypt that the company will offer additional future opportunities to onboard users beyond this initial NFT drop for “founding fans,” including NFTs that act as access passes to specific athletes’ respective huddles.
“We’ll be exploring many ways to thoughtfully bring fans into the community, while always ensuring we are honoring our founding fans in a unique way,” said Jordan.
In today’s Twitter Space, HEIR co-founder Smith spoke about why the platform chose to build on Solana versus other platforms, such as leading smart contract and NFT platform, Ethereum.
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“Ultimately, lower gas fees and transaction costs were super critical to us,” he said, referring to the cost of moving funds or interacting with apps on a blockchain network. “We had a chance to work with their executive team and understand their vision for Solana and ultimately, we had alignment on ethos and shared sensibilities. They believe a lot of the same things we believe when it came to the Web3 space”
HEIR isn’t Michael Jordan’s only play in the wider Web3 space. He also took part in January’s $46 million funding round for The Metaplex Foundation, the organization behind Solana’s Metaplex NFT protocol. Jordan also invested in crypto game maker Mythical Games’ $150 million Series C round last November.
“The entire team at HEIR is incredibly excited about the potential NFTs and Web3 have in connecting fans and athletes,” Jeffrey Jordan told Decrypt. “We believe the next generation of consumer entertainment experiences will be built on Web3.”
“We aim to redefine the perspective and functionality of digital culture,” he added, “while creating benefits for original culture creators and those who consume it early.”