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Portland Trail Blazers end jersey sponsorship with Seattle crypto startup StormX

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The Portland Trail Blazers’ StormX jersey patch. (Photo courtesy of Bruce Ely / Trail Blazers)

The Portland Trail Blazers are ending the team’s jersey sponsorship with Seattle crypto startup StormX.

The jersey deal was originally scheduled to last five years, beginning with the 2021-22 season. The StormX logo appeared on Blazers jerseys last year, and as recently as this week when the team produced promotional content.

But the Blazers announced Friday that they are looking for a new jersey partner.

“As we tip-off the 2022-23 season, we will launch a search to identify a new jersey patch partner as we’ve ended our current relationship with StormX,” the team said in a statement. “We’ll share additional information in the near future on this exciting new opportunity.”

GeekWire reached out to StormX for additional information, and will update when we hear back.

Founded in 2015, Seattle-based StormX operates a platform that lets users earn cryptocurrency rewards when they shop at stores. It also has its own token called STMX.

StormX was the first crypto company to be an NBA jersey sponsor and the first crypto brand to work with the Trail Blazers, highlighting the technology’s growing adoption and popularity in recent years.

But crypto companies have taken a hit this year amid the broader market slowdown, with prices of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies falling substantially. Crypto giants Coinbase and Robinhood both laid off employees this summer and their share prices are down by more than 70% over the past year.

The NBA in 2017 introduced its jersey patch sponsorship program that allows teams to earn revenue from companies who pay to get their logo stitched on the front left shoulder area of jerseys.

The deals average $7-to-$10 million each, according to a 2020 report from The Athletic. The Los Angeles Lakers recently inked a five-year jersey deal worth more than $100 million.

The Trail Blazers previously had a jersey deal with Performance Health and its Biofreeze brand.

Portland will visit Seattle this Monday Oct. 3 for a preseason game against the Los Angeles Clippers, the first NBA game to be played at Climate Pledge Arena.

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