FTX partners with Magnus Carlsen's chess company to sponsor tour and bonus prize of $100K in bitcoin

Crypto exchange FTX has partnered with Norway-listed chess company Play Magnus Group, founded by current world chess champion Magnus Carlsen, for a long-term deal.

As part of the deal, FTX will become the official crypto exchange partner of the Meltwater Champions Chess Tour and the presenting partner of the next Major of the Tour, the FTX Crypto Cup, which runs from May 23 to May 31. 

FTX will also sponsor a bonus prize of $100,000 in bitcoin for the cup, in addition to the $220,000 fund that the tour already has in place. The winner of the FTX Crypto Cup will be guaranteed a spot in the Final of the Tour in San Francisco in September. The FTX Crypto Cup is the final Major in this season's year-long Meltwater Champions Chess Tour.

FTX will also be a presenting partner of Play Magnus Group's coverage of the upcoming World Chess Championship in November 2021. 

In a similar partnership last month, FTX became the official and exclusive crypto exchange partner of the basketball team Miami Heat. As part of that deal, Miami Heat's home stadium became FTX Arena.

When asked what the main objective of such partnerships is, FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried told The Block that the crypto exchange operator looks to attract non-crypto natives to its platform. "We're excited to partner with the best in lots of areas and to expand to a natural user base of ours," said Bankman-Fried.