Spectators couldn’t see Crypto.com logos during Formula One’s French Grand Prix. Staff from Alfa Romeo and AlphaTauri reportedly removed any crypto-related branding.
In response to the uncertainty surrounding France’s advertising regulations, many Formula 1 international racing teams have reportedly covered or removed logos and branding from crypto-related sponsors.
RacingNews365 reported Tuesday that Crypto.com’s logos weren’t displayed at Sunday’s French Grand Prix. The crypto exchange has been an international partner since the series began in July 2021. According to reports, the team behind the Alpine Formula 1 car removed branding from Binance crypto exchange from its cars, drivers’ clothing, and letterhead.
“Knowing the regulations in France for cryptocurrency, and after discussions with our partner,” stated a spokesperson for AlphaTauri, an Italian F1 team that partnered with Fantom Foundation in January.
Alfa Romeo, a luxury car manufacturer, participated in the French Grand Prix.
“The team is following all French regulations regarding crypto partner advertising on the vehicle.” We were informed that in France, a crypto partner logo must be registered with the AMF in order to be displayed. This is not the case for two of our partners.
The AMF (Autorite des Marches Financiers) declared that it would work with France’s Professional Advertising Regulatory Authority in order to modify its regulatory framework to allow crypto-related ads. The regulator made recommendations about token offering ads and said that providers of digital asset services should provide information on the potential risks associated with crypto investments.
Many F1 teams showed signs of crypto sponsors, despite the vagueness of AMF’s statement. Red Bull Racing was sponsored by Tezos. In February, Bybit, a Singapore-based crypto trading platform, offered a sponsorship of $150 million. Red Bull Racing reportedly displayed both companies’ logos on the car at the French Grand Prix. This indicated that its legal team had discussed this matter.
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McLaren Racing was partnered with OKX crypto exchange. Similar actions were taken by McLaren Racing. Mercedes, sponsored crypto exchange FTX and Ferrari by blockchain firm Velas, reportedly went ahead with branding and logos. A Ferrari spokesperson suggested that Velas may not be covered by the AMF’s regulatory oversight.
“Velas Network AG told us that it doesn’t provide services that would require registration so there is no prohibition on advertising the Velas logo for the Scuderia Ferrari assets in the French GP.”
As the crypto space expands, many global regulators are scrutinizing ads for these products and services. Spain’s financial regulator declared in January that it would require ads to be clear, balanced, and fair, while also providing information about the risks associated with crypto investments. The United Kingdom’s Advertising Standards Authority prohibited certain ads from Crypto.com, Kraken, and Coinbase for failing to clearly illustrate the investment risk.