Sports brand Nike has announced that it will be creating its platform to showcase virtual fashion items, a step away from using third-party offerings.
Called .SWOOSH, the platform is Nike’s push into Web 3 built from the ground up that will allow users to collect, store, and even create their virtual items. The footwear manufacturing corporation stated that in the future, platform users would be able to gain access to exclusive events and earn royalties on the sale of their digital assets.
“We are shaping a marketplace of the future with an accessible platform for the web3-curious,” said Ron Faris, General Manager of Nike Virtual Studios. “In this new space, the .SWOOSH community and Nike can create, share, and benefit together.”
Building a native Web3 product as a traditional sportswear brand is an impressive feat, but Nike had some help from its growing network in the industry.
“We’ve learned a lot from our friend at RTFKT about how to do this right,” Faris said, adding that Nike has been having weekly conversations with RTFKT on the “best practices” and how to broaden the scope of the offering.
.SWOOSH is in its beta phase, and as such, the user will require an access code to enter the platform. The first users of the offering will be selected from three demographics: the most engaged customers of the brand, individuals from the diversity and inclusion groups, and persons that reside in cities that do not get access to new tech.
Although Faris disclosed that the project would adopt a measured pace, things are already in motion. This Friday, users will be given a chance to create their own .SWOOSH handle using the registration of domains, but the platform will not be selling any items yet.
“We’re not gonna sell stuff right away,” said Faris. “We really want to be careful and thoughtful about how we invite the community in. And so we’re going to start with a month of education—a six-city tour where we’ll be going to select spaces to help educate.”
Nike’s ambitious plans in Web3
Nike has lofty plans for the metaverse and digital assets in general as it seeks to improve customer engagement and get a headstart in the emerging industry. In the last quarter of 2021, Nike created a platform on Roblox, which went on to garner over 256 million visits since its launch.
It did not stop with Roblox, with Nike purchasing non-fungible token (NFT) studio RTFKT. Nike used RTFK as a platform to launch the Cryptokicks collection, which led to revenues of over $185 million, while other brands making a similar foray in the metaverse have failed to record similar numbers.
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