Nike to launch its own virtual trading platform for digital goods

    15 Nov 2022

    Nike is opening an online store and trading platform for virtual sneakers pumping investment into the metaverse. The ‘.Swoosh’ platform is a major part of the sneaker maker’s push into the metaverse. User registration begins on Nov. 18.

    Nike Inc., the world’s largest sportswear company, plans to release its own digital goods on the .Swoosh platform, and users will be able to collect and show off their items on it, Bloomberg reported. The virtual products will include various types of tie-ins, and some may unlock access to physical items, make them available in video games or provide entry to real-life events.

    “We’re entering a test-and-learn phase,” head of Nike Virtual Studios Ron Faris told Bloomberg. “We don’t know quite yet what the behavior will be that consumers will have with the virtual product.”

    To introduce the product category to consumers, Nike will go on a six-city tour to educate shoppers on Web3 and blockchain technology. The first collection, which is set to debut in January, will be priced in US dollars to reduce volatility and keep the process familiar for new buyers. Users will be able to connect their own wallets to bring items to other marketplaces.

    “This whole effort is about providing Nike members a safe environment to play,” Faris said.

    Moreover, some athletes signed with Nike will have their own storefronts on the site. Individual creators may also be able to co-create products with Nike through community challenges and earn royalties on their designs.

    Investing in the metaverse over the past year, Nike now has a devoted design team for its digital wares. In 2021, it began filing trademarks for virtual goods, opened its own virtual world on Roblox, and purchased the creator of virtual sneakers RTFKT

    As a result, Nike has earned from NFT products about $200 million to date, according to Dune Analytics, strongly outperforming other fashion giants, such as Dolce & Gabbana, Gucci, and Adidas.

    Meanwhile, Gucci started to accept ApeCoin as payment at select US stores this August. The firm already accepts other top crypto coins and collaborates on NFT and metaverse game projects. Another high fashion brand, Tiffany & Co., recently rolled out a handcrafted pendants collection modeled on CryptoPunks, an iconic NFT collection owned by Yuga Labs.

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