Metaverse: Nike Acquires NFT Sneaker Studio

Footwear and apparel giant Nike, has taken yet again, another step in its bid to expand its stronghold in the metaverse by announcing the acquisition of a digital sneaker studio RTFKT. RTFKT Studios focuses on digital collectibles based on sneakers using Ethereum.

According to Nike President John Donahoe, the acquisition of RTFKT studio is to grow their community and expand the company’s digital stronghold in the metaverse. In the press statement released on Monday, Donahoe, who came onboard last year with the goal of propelling the company to greater heights, went ahead to shower praises on RTFKT, calling its team of creators “talented”.

The co-founder of the digital sneaker studio Chris Le, stated that making innovative sneakers was all inspired by Nike. He added that the acquisition is the beginning of a new phase in the studio’s story.

The latest move adds to Nike’s growing list of acquisitions in the new version of the internet, claimed by many to be the future of shopping, communication, and way of life. Both Nike and RTFKT confirmed the acquisition on their Twitter pages on Monday.

Nike’s Previous Moves In The Metaverse

Since the start of the year, the renowned shoe and apparel brand has been quietly expanding its foothold in the metaverse with continuous investments. This move was orchestrated as a result of their low supply chain affected by the Covid in the last one year.

Last month, the company partnered with Roblox to launch a virtual world known as NIKELAND on the gaming platform. The Oregon company revealed that the virtual world would be available to users for free. 

Users will be able to clad their avatars in their favorite sneakers and try out new products from the apparel giant. NIKELAND includes buildings and sports fields where players can compete in the available games. 

Nike disclosed that it would add more in-play features to spice up the various games and make it to be on par with global sporting events. Interestingly, the two companies paired up in 2019 to launch Nike Air Max Day. Also in November, Nike requested to trademark some virtual goods in a bid to gain more grounds in the digital virtual world.

Other Apparel Companies Are Making Moves In The Metaverse

Nike isn’t the only apparel company to take advantage of the growing metaverse. Adidas disclosed earlier this month that it had acquired Bored Ape NFTs for more than $156k and has collaborated with the creators to expand their offerings in the metaverse.

The metaverse is still relatively new, with lots of companies still not capitalizing on the opportunities it presents. Nike has seen the opportunities the metaverse offers, and has leveraged it to connect with upcoming athletes and entice them to use the brand’s products more often to generate more sales in the physical world.

Matt Friend, who serves as the CFO of the company, once stated that the company is positioned to attain its goal of having digital businesses reach 40% by 2025. The opportunities in the digital world are too massive to ignore, especially at this time, where the world is navigating towards online shopping.