Nike is making a move into the Metaverse following their acquisition of NFT collectibles firm, San Francisco-based Rare Bits. The company has opened up its first store in the virtual world to showcase many rare and limited Nike sneakers that are currently only available on digital marketplaces (Netscape’s CryptoKitties).
Nike made a crucial move in the market of cryptocurrency by acquiring NFT collectibles firm “Nike makes crucial Metaverse move following acquisition of NFT collectibles firm”. The company announced that it would be launching its own digital currency, called Nike Coin. Read more in detail here: nft collectibles.
RTFKT Studios, which Nike describes as “a leading brand that harnesses cutting edge innovation to offer next-generation collectibles that blend culture and gaming,” was acquired by Nike in mid-December.
The details of the purchase were not disclosed by the athletic goods behemoth. However, practically everyone believes that this transaction is part of Nike’s strategic push into the Metaverse, considering RTFKT’s track record in the NFT market.
RTFKT co-founder Benoit Pagotto commented on the purchase, saying that both companies have parallels in innovation, creativity, and community. RTFKT will extend its Metaverse activities as a result of the transaction, according to Pagotto.
“Nike is the only company in the world that shares our profound love for innovation, creativity, and community, and we’re delighted to continue growing our metaverse-born brand.”
NFTs are nothing new for Nike.
RTKFT was created by friends Benoit Pagotto, Chris Le, and Steven Vasilev in January 2020. Their goal was to come up with next-generation Metaverse concepts.
“To make one-of-a-kind shoes and digital artifacts, RTFKT combines the latest in gaming engines, NFT, blockchain authentication, and augmented reality with manufacturing experience.”
In a process known as “forging,” the company also connects the real and digital worlds. Certain NFTs are turned into actual goods that the owner of the NFT may redeem and hold in the real world.
The “Crypotkicks” patent from Nike made headlines in 2019. The patent shows a method that connects safe digital assets to physical items. This seems to be used to trace ownership and confirm validity.
The Metaverse connection wasn’t as evident two years ago. However, purchasing a pair of Cryptokicks in the actual world also implies owning them in the virtual world, linking the two realms to some extent.
“A digital version of a show may be constructed, connected to the customer, and given a cryptographic token when a consumer buys a real pair of shoes, where the digital shoe and cryptographic token jointly comprise a ‘CryptoKick.”
What does Nike’s Metaverse vision entail?
The Metaverse is quickly becoming a catchphrase to characterize a future virtual environment, thanks to media publicity.
To be sure, the technology isn’t quite there yet, as represented in films like Ready Player One. However, futurists believe that technology is convergent enough to reach to that position, with 2022 serving as a tipping point.
Nike executives, according to The Verge, believe that in the future, Metaverse users would play games or visit virtual areas where their NFT things will materialize when their ownership rights (linked to a wallet) have been authenticated.
As a result, just as bragging rights over the newest Nike releases exist in the real world, they will exist in the Metaverse as well.
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