AVATAR LEADER GENIES AND NFLPA ONETEAM COLLECTIVE TEAM UP TO BRING NFL PLAYERS INTO THE DIGITAL WORLD

Known as “Instagram’s Favorite Avatar,” Genies Already Works With Top Athletes and Celebrities Like Jared Goff, Ndamukong Suh, Richard Sherman, Russell Westbrook, Jennifer Lopez and Rihanna

LOS ANGELES – July 2019 – Genies, Inc., an innovative digital avatar company that announced the world's first Avatar Agency and launched the platform on all social media and chat platforms (ranked as #2 worldwide in the Social Networking category of the App Store), announced today a strategic partnership and investment with the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) via its athlete-driven accelerator, the OneTeam Collective. The partnership will allow Genies to sign over 2,000 active NFL players to the new Avatar Agency and integrate the players’ dynamic 3-D likenesses into the Genies social app.

“We’re thrilled to be working with the NFLPA and the OneTeam Collective. Through this partnership, we’ll be able to offer players unprecedented experiences and benefits that they aren’t able to access in the real world,” stated Allison Sturges, Managing Director of the Avatar Agency. “Genies have proven to be the ultimate branding experience for celebrities across the world and our partnership is going to further that message in the upcoming season.” 

For the consumer, using Genies is simple. Once the Genies app is downloaded, users create a digital avatar through virtual closets called “Wheels” where they can outfit their avatar using popular clothing and lifestyle brands. A user then exports their custom avatar to their favorite messaging and social platforms through an extensive library of animations.

There are three ways that Genies is partnering with the NFLPA and OneTeam Collective:

  1. Talent: All active NFL players will have the opportunity to join the Genies Avatar Agency roster, where they can access their digital brands and secure additional paid partnerships all through their personalized Genies.
  2. Branded Wheel: Branded apparel will be available through the app where users can adorn their Genies in the latest digital clothing from their favorite NFL players. 
  3. Actions: Football-specific actions will be available for Genies users to share across all messaging and social platforms.

Through the partnership, Genies can work with the NFLPA via its marketing and licensing arm, NFL Players Inc. to sign up active players to the Avatar Agency, the world’s first creative marketing agency for digital avatars. The NFLPA will also be featured on the Genies roster as a way for brands to access virtually any player they want to work with. Through the Avatar Agency, top-tier celebrities, artists, and athletes partner with brands and earn additional revenue through their digital selves. Cardi B, Rihanna, DJ Khaled, Jennifer Lopez, Offset, Russell Westbrook, and Madonna are among thousands of celebrities currently using their Genies across social and digital platforms.

Additionally, by accessing players’ likenesses through the NFLPA roster, Genies users will be able to adorn their avatars with hand-crafted digital apparel options that represent their favorite NFL players.

The NFLPA will also have its own exclusive category in the Genies keyboard that allows users to share NFL-player football actions across messaging and social platforms. Whether it’s a signature TD celebration, a culturally relevant sports moment, or a fun and memorable game day action – fans can live and express their fandom as an NFL player in the digital world through their Genie. 

“Genies has the potential to open up doors for players in ways that have never been done before. By having a digital avatar representation, they’ll be able to do triple the amount of things in triple the amount of places in the same exact time. This will allow them to focus on football while still being able to take care of business off the field,” said Ahmad Nassar, president of NFL Players Inc. and chairman of the OneTeam Collective. “We’re excited about our investment and partnership with Genies, and look forward to developing greater opportunities for players and fans to express themselves through intelligent and dynamic avatars.”

The Genies team participated in the NFLPA OneTeam Collective Pitch Day in Atlanta in January 2019. The company becomes the 11th portfolio company secured through the athlete-driven accelerator, which provides innovative startup businesses the opportunity to leverage the NFLPA’s exclusive group player rights and access to current players for product inclusion, activations and endorsements.

For more information, please visit genies.com.

ABOUT GENIES, INC.

Genies, Inc. is an avatar technology company based in Venice, Calif. Akash Nigam and Evan Rosenbaum, both 26, started Genies in 2016. Genies has raised $30 million in capital from an eclectic group of venture capital firms and angel investors and currently employees 30 people, the majority of whom are engineers, illustrators, and animators.

ABOUT THE ONETEAM COLLECTIVE

The sports industry’s first athlete-driven business accelerator for innovative companies seeking to incorporate sports strategies to drive growth. OneTeam Collective is comprised of founding partners – NFLPA, BlackRock, Harvard Innovation Lab, Intel Capital, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, CSM LeadDog, Madrona Venture Group and Sports Innovation Lab. The collective offers access to the NFLPA’s player membership via licensing, marketing and content rights, research and development, funding and mentorship for product development and marketing support. OneTeam Collective, which features an Athlete Advisory Board, is the first program providing rights to sports-related intellectual property, highlighted by the NFLPA’s exclusive group licensing rights and access to more than 2,000 current NFL players. Currently, nine partners are within the portfolio, spanning blockchain, wearables, voice recognition, digital media, augmented reality, artificial intelligence, health and wellness, active gaming and live video streaming. Prospective companies can apply to participate and submit their application at oneteamcollective.com.

ABOUT THE NFL PLAYERS ASSOCIATION

The National Football League Players Association is the union for professional football players in the National Football League. Established in 1956, the NFLPA has a long history of assuring proper recognition and representation of players’ interests. The NFLPA has shown that it will do whatever is necessary to assure that the rights of players are protected—including ceasing to be a union, if necessary, as it did in 1989. In 1993, the NFLPA again was officially recognized as the union representing the players and negotiated a landmark Collective Bargaining Agreement with the NFL. The current CBA will govern the sport through 2020.

ABOUT NFL PLAYERS INC.

NFL Players Inc., the licensing and marketing arm of the NFLPA, connects businesses to the power of NFL players. NFL Players Inc. creates customized business solutions for partners, through licensing, marketing strategy, and player activations. For more information, please visit nflpa.com/players.