Concerns about the cryptocurrency, including pending Australian regulation, have not deterred cricketer Steve Smith from wading into sector, taking a minority equity stake in Perth crypto app Bamboo, and also becoming its brand ambassador.
The move by Smith comes as US sports stars including NFL legend Tom Brady, NBA star Stephen Curry and tennis champion Naomi Osaka face a class action legal action over their celebrity endorsements of collapsed crypto exchange FTX. The Australian arm of FTX was placed in administration in November last year amid the company’s global implosion. Founder and former on-paper billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried was arrested and currently facing charges in the US. The collapse had an impact on local crypto exchanges exposed to FTX.
The fintech’s deal sees Smith become an equity holder – the size of the investment was not disclosed and feature in a video ad campaign currently in market.
Bamboo CEO Blake Cassidy said the campaign has already deliver a fivefold increase in app sign ups.
“We’re thrilled to welcome Steve Smith to the Bamboo team as our new brand ambassador,” he said.
“Steve is an Aussie icon and test cricket legend. His simple, steady and focused approach to cricket is a perfect fit with Bamboo’s commitment to helping everyday Australians get started investing into Bitcoin, Ethereum, Gold and Silver.”
The batsman and former Australian cricket captain has already seen enormous success investing in startups, having tipped $100,000 into the Byron furniture venture Koala Mattresses in 2016 for a 10% stake, which went on to be worth $12 million.
Smith said he’s invested in crypto assets for some time.
“I’m excited to be a part of the Bamboo team and help spread the word about the dollar cost averaging strategy for everyday investors,” he said.
“There are definite parallels between my approach to building an innings and the dollar cost averaging investment strategy. Bamboo makes it easy to put that strategy on autopilot enabling more Australians to start building a balanced portfolio with exposure to cryptocurrency.
Earlier this year, Smith won a fourth Allan Border medal, which is awarded to the best Australian male cricketer of the past 12 months.
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