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The world's largest cryptocurrency exchange, Binance, has become the official sponsor of AFCON 2021, or the TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations.  

"I am delighted to welcome Binance as an official sponsor of the AFCON tournament this year. Through this partnership with CAF, Binance will connect further with its users and the African community through football," said Veron Mosengo-Omba, Confederation of African Football (CAF)'s General Secretary. 

The tournament, which began on January 9, will be live broadcast to more than 300 million people living in over 160 countries. Playing for a spot in the February finals are 24 African nations and prominent sportsmen like Egypt's Mohamed Salah and Senegal's Sadio Mane.

Sports advertising has become an increasingly popular avenue for crypto exchanges to demonstrate the value of their brand. In November, Los Angeles' Staples Center rebranded to the Crypto.com Arena. And in December, FTX signed a sponsorship deal with NBA's Golden State Warriors. 

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Binance's sponsorship deal highlights the company's objective to make crypto and blockchain mainstream across Africa: “With a population of 1.2 billion Africans and the prevalence of blockchain technology and its use cases, we believe the African continent could lead the future of the blockchain industry," said Yi He, co-founder, and CMO of Binance. "We will continue to put in our efforts in pushing the mainstream adoption of crypto so that more people can understand crypto, and understand Binance."

Since 2020, the company has offered free crypto education classes on topics like blockchain and user protection to over 541,000 Africans.