Culture & Sport

A tennis player sells arm and uses crypto to fund her career

Oleksandra Oliynykova, a young professional tennis player, has sold lifetime tattoo and body arts exclusive rights of her arm against Ethereum.

A tennis player and cryptocurrency enthusiast

“Sacha” Oliynykova, a Croatian tennis player in her professional debuts, decided to sell a part of her arm against Ethereum.

Ethereum is a cryptocurrency whose unit was worth a bit more than $2,000 USD in April 2021. It was only valued at $736 USD at the beginning of 2021.

Six days after it was put on auction, the tennis player’s skin was sold for 3 ETH, or almost $5,415 USD at the time, to JumpHigh.

The owner can now leave the arm blank, put a permanent or temporary tattoo or even resell the area as a communication space during tournaments. A sports betting site wouldn’t be able to use it due to legal constraints.

The exact size of the area is 15×8 cm and covers a large part of her biceps, a zone of a tennis player highly visible.

This modest Croatian player obtained is currently 655th in the WTA singles ranking. Although she didn’t participate in a Grand Slam tournament yet, her innovative sale has however gained her attraction.

Oleksandra "OliCrypto" Oliynykova sells her arms for advertisers
Oleksandra “OliCrypto” Oliynykova who has a notable “2006” tattoo in the front part of her neck has sold skin space on her right arms

Several attempts to creatively fund her career

While tennis superstars accumulate the majority of the prize money and marketing investment, visibility and media attraction is key to attracting sponsors or selling image rights and financing a professional sports career.

With no sponsor yet, she has proved to be creative in trying to find money and is able to continue playing tennis.

She is going to promote a digital currency in the hope that its value will benefit her.

Oleksandra Oliynykova, a refugee who flew Ukraine at the age of 10, decided to become an ambassador of the Bitcoin Cash currency by wearing t-shirts and accessories with the Bitcoin Cash logo when she steps on a tennis court.

Even if she is not paid for doing so, the more a cryptocurrency is used, the more it is valued, which in turn benefits its owners. She didn’t say whether she owned any of the digital currency but a wallet specifically dedicated to her project can receive donations in Bitcoin Cash.

In 2016 and 2017, she also tried to collect money via 2 crowdfunding campaigns which brought her only 826 €, when her travel costs amounted to 15,000 € a year.

Athletes have always been creative in finding new opportunities, and Oliynykova explores the area of digital currency.

The U.S. tennis player Jessica Pegula, 33rd in the WTA ranking, launched a limited edition of digital cards sold via non-fungible tokens.

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