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Manchester City in the financial spotlight in the aftermath of shadowy start-up venture

Manchester City in the financial spotlight in the aftermath of shadowy start-up venture

Manchester City is under financial scrutiny as a result of a shady start-up deal.

The company in question is called 3Key, and City Football Group’s senior vice president of Global Partnership Sales, Stephen Cieplik, praised the agreement.

“We are excited to partner with 3Key in their journey to simplify the decentralised finance (DeFi) trading analysis user experience through the power of football to engage with our fans with a range of content and activations.”

According to  The Guardian, investigations into the operation’s core have yielded little, if anything at all. 3Key, which is based in Seychelles, has almost no digital footprint, and neither do those said to be in the company’s hierarchy.

According to the report in the Guardian “Investigative reporter Martin Calladine set online hares racing on Twitter on Monday when he charged people with finding Hodder or other executives named on a press release announcing the arrival of 3Key into the “decentralized finance” market a month ago. After 48 hours, the closest anyone has come to verified information is a photo of a man with a ginger beard in a checked suit who may or may not be 3Key’s “chief growth strategist’ Jacob Caine.”

Manchester City is now directly linked with a shadowy company that is said to facilitate trade in digital assets such as cryptocurrency and NFTs (non-fungible tokens). Despite requests, City has refused to comment on the deal.

La Liga chief accuses City of financial doping

When asked about his thoughts on the European Super League fiasco, La Liga chief Javier Tebas did not mince words in what amounted to a scathing attack on Manchester City in renewed attacks on the club’s ownership model.

“It is not normal that a sovereign fund, such as that of Qatar, can act in an unlimited way in continually injecting money. This creates market inflation and allows clubs in debt to compete with others despite significant losses. What PSG and City are doing is economic doping.”

City is frequently – and perhaps rightly – at the forefront of criticisms about money controlling football and a club’s ability to spend money with the financial backing of a sovereign nation, despite the financial books painting a wildly different picture.

It was another shot fired at Manchester City as the club continued to build success on the field while also developing a global brand off the field.

With the financial state of football constantly under scrutiny in the direction – or directions – it appears primed to take, the deal with 3Key will be closely watched, as one has to wonder if this is yet another trick up the sleeve of a club under ownership that appears hell-bent on stretching the rules as thin as possible.


Manchester City in the financial spotlight in the aftermath of shadowy start-up venture

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