We speak to Javier Jiménez Sacristán about his return to professional football, and his appointment to a Spanish second division club.


He was the CEO and Vice President for Córdoba Football Club in Spain. Always embracing technology, he now has his eyes on a new challenge. We speak to Javier Jiménez Sacristán about his return to professional football, the recent appointment to a Spanish second division club and his vision for the future. 

I love history; this next story comes all the way from northern Spain. Javier, the previous manager for Cordoba football club, has recently been appointed to the innovations manager position at SD Ponferradina. 

The club turns 100 years old on the 7th of June; I wanted to mention at this point that it’s in the second division with its eyes on the first. The club itself has played nine seasons professionally, and three of them consecutively. 

Stadium

Their stadium has the capacity for close to 8,500 spectators, and 6,000 season ticket holders make up 10% of the entire population of Ponferradina. The town is located in the Northwest of Spain and was initially made famous by its once-thriving mining sector. Today, its wine manufacturing Industry has contributed to placing it back on the map.

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Milestone

Turning a hundred years old is a milestone in any context. On the 7th of June 2021, SD Ponferradina, a Spanish 2nd division club, will do just that. In the second division, with the first firmly placed on its wish list, the introduction of technology is key to that journey.

Every business model has toyed with the application of NFT tech since the harnessing of data can impact the economies of scale and, to an extent, future proof the creation of multiple income streams. 

NFT

The Football industry as a whole is undoubtedly testimony of how the concept of NFT tokens (BBC News, bbc.co.uk/news or bbc.com/newscan) be used. 

Simply put, NFT is a non-interchangeable unit of data that is stored on a blockchain, effectively a filing cabinet. Each item of data has a unique address in that filing system.

The future

Hailed as the future of Football, it’s just one of the digital assets in SD Ponferradina SAD’s arsenal. Actively seeking novel and bold methods to use data, they hope to add true value to the club’s loyal following, not forgetting to mention new.

The newly appointed innovations manager is no stranger to a challenge; after all, he took Cordoba into the first division. Now responsible for taking Ponferradina, a member of LALIGA and generating international exposure, we catch up with Javier Jiménez Sacristán at his office in Spain to find out more about his recent appointment.

Javier Jiménez Sacristán
Javier Jiménez Sacristán

You were recently appointed to the position of Innovations manager, could you explain the role for our audience?

My position is to introduce cutting-edge technology and increase awareness globally to obtain sponsorship agreements; I want to improve fan engagement and monetise our digital assets. My objective is to respect the club’s 100-year-old traditional values at the same time as introducing cutting edge technology.

Some examples of how technology has impacted our club would be our App, which allows selfies to be beamed directly onto our large stadium screens. We will be launching a museum to mark our 100th year. We also have NFT tokens that will mean our supporters can buy special edition virtual and physical apparel. 

How does social media help you?

Like all clubs, we have a genuine need to connect with our fan base. An excellent example of how we interact is with one of our players from Iran. When we announced that he was our new goalkeeper, he received over 50,000 hits. So I want to embrace social media and harness its potential to the club’s exposure.

Photo of the SDPONFERADINA stadium for the editorial on Javier Jiménez Sacristán.

How does it feel to be back in the Industry you are passionate about?

The owner and president of the club has been in this position for 22 years, the CEO for Ponferradina for 16 years even the staff have been working for Ponferradina for a long time. It’s like working with one large family. So, since I worked for Cordoba, the President and the CEO have maintained a strong relationship.

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