Bitcoin Used To Hire Amateur Football Player In Turkey

Announcements, News | February 1, 2018 By:

Harunustaspor, a Turkish amateur football team, has completed the world’s first football transfer using bitcoin.

The Sakarya First Division Group B club used bitcoin to sign Omer Faruk Kiroglu for 0.0524 BTC ($528), plus 2,500 Turkish lira ($661).

In an interview with state-run news outlet Anadolu Agency, Harunustaspor chairman Haldun Sehit said the club decided to sign a player with the cryptocurrency to make the team known “in Turkey and the world.” He added: “God willing, bitcoin will bring us the championship.”

Kıroğlu was pleased to be part of the experience. He said: “This is a first for me and for the world. As the chairman said, we are doing something new. I am open to new things.”

The announcement comes amid warnings from the Turkish government against using bitcoin. Earlier this month, Turkey’s Financial Stability Committee warned against trading in bitcoin, saying it is highly volatile and lacks regulation by authorities.

Deputy Prime Minister Mehmet Şimşek, the secretary of the treasury, said bitcoin is highly speculative and vulnerable to cyber attacks, as there are no official security guarantees for the electronic wallets which store the virtual currency. He warned that due to the irreversible nature of the transactions, individuals and firms would be vulnerable to fraud.

In November 2017, Turkish lawmakers said that buying and selling bitcoin is not compatible with the Islam religion because of the fact that its valuation is open to speculation. The lawmakers added that bitcoin can be easily used in illegal activities like money laundering, and they are not under the state’s audit and surveillance.