Nike intends to expand its presence in the Web3 space with new plans outlined in a recent blog post from its virtual lab, .Swoosh.
Looking ahead to 2024, Nike wants to dive deeper into the gaming world by introducing “Nike In-Game Wearables.” These virtual clothing items will allow users to purchase and outfit their avatars or characters within their favorite video games.
The virtual experience will bridge into the physical realm, offering in-game wearable holders the opportunity to unlock corresponding physical apparel and footwear. To enhance accessibility, users won’t need a separate wallet; instead, they can connect their game accounts directly to Nike.
Furthermore, Nike is introducing the option for holders to “off-ramp” their collectibles to personal wallets, enabling trading on NFT marketplaces with royalty options.
Nike unveiled .Swoosh in November 2022 to house all its virtual creations. The initiative kicked off with a contest for aspiring designers, allowing winners to contribute to the lab’s Our Force 1 collection and earn royalties.
Building on this, .Swoosh debuted its first NFT initiative in April 2023, unveiling a collection of Our Force 1 Posters, followed by a virtual Air Max sneaker NFT drop on Fortnite in June. The latest 2023 NFT project, “TINAJ,” presented an exclusively designed Air Force 1 Low model accessible only to NFT holders.
Before .Swoosh, Nike had already ventured into the Web3 space with the 2021 acquisition of RTFKT, a brand specializing in NFT sneakers and collectibles, along with subsequent partnerships and NFT initiatives.
The fashion industry appears to be a significant beneficiary of NFTs and the metaverse. Roblox’s November 2023 report highlighted a 15% year-over-year increase in digital fashion item purchases (1.6 billion) during the first three quarters of 2023. Additionally, 84% of respondents expressed a likelihood of considering a brand in the physical world after virtual interactions.
Looking ahead, projections indicate substantial growth in the metaverse fashion market, with Technavio forecasting a market share of $6.61 billion by 2026 and a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 36.47%.