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The Color Star Cup Runneth Over

Pepe Reina of Villarreal CF during the friendly football match between SSC Napoli and Villarreal CF at Diego Armando Maradona stadium. Naples (Italy), December 17th, 2022.
Cesare Purini/Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images

All eyes were on soccer in December this year, and the World Cup pretty much delivered. Just look at what happened in the final. Argentina and France went back and forth in what wound up being an almost impossibly great match. Lionel Messi, perhaps the greatest of all time, finally won the World Cup. And Argentina goalkeeper Emi Martínez got to pretend that the giant hand trophy he received was his penis. It had something for everyone!

While the world was paying attention to that, however, an even more remarkable soccer tournament was taking place in Europe. I’m talking, of course, about the Color Star Cup. Yes, our favorite metaverse company—now describing itself as “an entertainment technology company with a global network that focuses on the application of technology and artificial intelligence in the entertainment industry”—is continuing to innovate in the Doing Strange Stuff space.

I first came across this news when Chris Thompson informed me this morning that Color Star has changed its stock ticker symbol. The company is no longer $CSCW. It is $ADD. It does not appear that the former concrete and education company has pivoted to selling amphetamines. “This marks an important milestone for the Company after years of continuous efforts and the remarkable achievements it has achieved in the fields of software development and artificial intelligence applications,” Color Star said.

The stock has been trading below a dollar since early November; it is out of compliance with NASDAQ rules (stocks must trade above a buck). In a release, Color Star says it received notice of being out of compliance on Dec. 22, and has 180 days to get back to compliance, though it may be eligible for an 180-day extension on that timeframe. The press release simply states these NASDAQ rules without explaining how Color Star will get back to compliance. (Typically, companies can cure this with a reverse stock split.) But maybe Color Star expects a run on their stock because of their other big December news. The same month its stock was deemed out of compliance, the Color Star Cup took place. Kind of.

First, briefly, some backstory: Though Color Star had a brief dalliance as a 76ers sponsor—you can see their logo during a Sixers’ game a year ago in this photo—the team dropped them in January 2022, not long after Color Star said in a tweet that it would try to plug Ben Simmons into its metaverse. But though we didn’t get to see that take place, it was not been the end of Color Star’s presence in the world of sports. In February of last year, Color Star became a jersey sponsor for the Spanish soccer club Villarreal FC. The Color Star logo began appearing on the left sleeve of Villarreal kits. In October of this year, the two renewed their partnership, perhaps because Spain does not have a Defector (a Desertor) to cover this.

Color Star was very excited! On Dec. 20, the company celebrated Villarreal’s Juan Foyth and Gerónimo Rulli winning the World Cup with Argentina in a press release titled “The Future is Bright as Fierce Generals of the Yellow Submarine Win the World Cup.”

During the World Cup, the players showed the world the charm of soccer through their incredible team chemistry and individual skills. Each player represented their team, their country, and most importantly, the beautiful sport of soccer. Although Foyth and Rulli did not receive many chances to shine, their young age indicates a promising future with lots of glory awaiting them.

But it was a press release nine days later that shed some glory on the actual biggest sporting event of 2022: The Color Star Cup. Or is it the Color Star European Winter Tournament? It tends to be complicated with Color Star. Let's just say that either works.

NEW YORK, Dec. 29, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- A few days ago, the 2022 Color Star European Winter Tournament was fully underway, with Color Star Technology Co., Ltd. (Nasdaq: ADD) ("Color Star" or the "Company"), an entertainment technology company with a global network that focuses on the application of technology and artificial intelligence in the entertainment industry, serving as the title sponsor. Color Star's partner team, Villarreal Club de Fútbol, S.A.D. ("Villarreal"), went on to achieve stellar results during the tour, beating out Italian giants S.S.C. Napoli with a score line of 3-2, before also besting England's Aston Villa F.C. 1-0 on the road. Villarreal's strength requires no further proof; the team's goal is to be crowned as the champions of the Color Star Cup.

Those games are, on Villarreal’s website, classified as friendlies. The Yellow Submarines beat Napoli 3-2 on Dec. 17, in a match where Napoli wore Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer on its jerseys. Villarreal also beat Aston Villa on Dec. 15 on a late goal from Etienne Capoue. In a startling change of pace for the company, this press release was legit. These games really were sponsored by Color Star.

Though the name comes after the title—it’s like a bowl game that’s “presented by Defector” rather than the “Defector Bowl”—that still counts as a “title sponsorship.” Color Star did it! And it gets better! “Color Star will gather all the clips of exciting highlights at sponsored events,” the release continues, “and turn them into NFTs which fans may purchase.”

Despite the press release, it’s not clear if Villarreal actually won the prestigious Color Star European Winter Tournament. Villarreal went 3-1 in friendlies played during the World Cup; the team it lost to, Fenerbahçe SK, won all four of its friendlies. So did they get the Color Star Cup? Also, where is the Color Star Cup?

I would again like to thank the Philadelphia 76ers for partnering with this company. The fallout has brought me much more joy than their repeated second-round playoff exits.

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