CRYPTO giant OKX said yesterday that it sees sponsorships — such as its tie-up with McLaren — as a way of differentiating themselves from less reliable crypto exchanges.
The Formula 1 team’s car in this past weekend’s Singapore Grand Prix was wrapped in a new one-off livery, with OKX’s ‘Stealth Mode’ design causing a stir on the paddock.
The new livery will also be used in Tokyo this weekend.
The crypto industry has suffered from a series of negative headlines over the recent year thanks to a fall in commodity prices and the well-publicised downfall of FTX.
However, yesterday Haider Rafique, OKX’s chief marketing officer, said partnerships with brands like McLaren was a way of restoring confidence in the sector and defining OKX’s future.
“It’s true that the industry is still developing and that the space has had to earn back trust. We’ve seen a lot of progress in the past year and OKX is proud to have spearheaded this,” Rafique said.
“While others went big during the bull market, we held on until the hype phase was over to launch our more significant campaigns,” he added.
McLaren Racing chief exec Zak Brown told City A.M. that the partnership with OKX has gone from “strength to strength” with a real focus on fan engagement.
Both Formula 1 and the crypto industry have attempted to reach out to new audiences in recent years, with the former’s Netflix tie-up Drive to Survive bringing in a raft of new fans to the sport.
As part of the livery launch, OKX opened a downtown fan zone in Singapore which Brown said was proving popular.
“The fan reaction has been great. I visited (on Friday) and met lots of fans which was fantastic,” he said.
“This is a big moment for us as it allows our brand identity to be expressed out there on the track at two of the year’s most eye-catching sporting events. This year’s ‘Stealth Mode’ theme is about harnessing teamwork, creativity and innovation for success both on the track, and in the Web3 world,” Rafique said.