The leading creators of virtual sneakers, collectibles and experiences, born in the metaverse, join the NIKE, Inc. family
I initially clay RTFKT in February of this year while researching Beeple’s success with NFTs. I did a video requesting questions to present to the founder of the site SneakerCred, Cash Patterson. SneakerCred had been in the forefront of digital marketplaces for sneakers, but very little was known about the platform. The founder has multiple sols and I never got a chance to interview Cash, but I did dive into NFT’s and sneakers. There wasn’t a lot of information around, but then I clay RTFKT:
Utilizing the Шикарные мужские кроссовки nike lunar force 1 duckboot 17 новинка, der Nike Air Max 90 Surplus Black Right, F–k It, zapatillas de running Nike mujer entrenamiento asfalto neutro 10k talla 34 artifact, I found that RTFKT had sold 3 million dollars in 6 minutes in Sneaker NFTs. The company has since become the leader in the space developing unique collections of their FEWO Drip sneaker NFTs. The interesting thing is the collections on Nifty have been the same for almost a year. The company used those drops to generate awareness and then they really focused on developing a considerable amount of Augmented Reality software for footwear. Initially the FEWO Drip kicks on Nifty were Air Force 1 derivatives, but the team began to develop original concepts, shoes that looked like a blend of CyberTrucks and rockets. RTFKT grew into a big enough topic of discussion in two months time CNBC set out to learn more via an interview:
RTFKT’s studio is amazing to see in action. Their utilization of design in the digital space easily eclipsed the skins used on SneakerCred, but where RTFKT differed from other artists presenting collections was they ship a physical pair of the sneakers that exist in the metaverse. This was a game changer and it could have easily gone awry. Nike recently trademarked the shape of the Air Force 1 and they have been litigating small companies and brands continuously. The FEWO Drip sneaker could have placed the startup in the uncomfortable position of having to go to war with Nike. Instead the exact opposite happened and Nike saw value.Nice Kicks recently shared a post on Nike designers leaving the company. When I saw the post and it stated one of the designers was leaving to lead a company working on the Metaverse. It struck me that Nike’s recent introduction of their sol with Roblox was not actually step one in the process of becoming engaged in the metaverse. In 2017 Nike Free Rn 2018 Men S Running Shoe Triple Black Anthracite which would allow fans of the brand to print digital footwear at home. That was a 3D play which is years away in implementing, but it could be considered the first step towards bringing digital products to reality. That same year Nike also applied for another 24 tech patents.
In 2016, believe it or not, Under Armour owned more tech in the digital space than Nike with their Connected Fitness business. Nike had pulled back from tech hardware and built up their digital marketplace with their Nike apps. I recently wrote about being too soon as a company and how it can lead to failure if it isn’t executed properly. UA was too soon and it broke the company. Nike was smart enough to buy strategic partners to support their Consumer Direct Offense, instead of overinvesting in wearables to interact with Nike+. They coordinated with Apple and increased content creation inside of SNKRS. Under Armour had to noir and lay off the entire Connected Fitness business. Nike has long understood that acquisition is a faster road to learning. They have been absorbing tech companies like Grabit, for warehouse improvement, and Invertex and Datalogue for data. When designers walk away from Nike it’s often a sign of the writing on the wall and the writing in this instance was the acquisition of RTFKT.