Under Armour Inc. is making its first foray into the metaverse by selling a limited collection of digital sneakers to celebrate NBA star Stephen Curry‘s latest record-breaking achievement.
The Baltimore-based sportswear maker sold 2,974 pairs of the Genesis Curry Flow as non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, on Tuesday — one for each 3-pointer Curry has made in his career to become the NBA’s all-time leader.
The NFTs are digital replicas of the shoes the Golden State Warriors guard wore when he broke the record previously held by Ray Allen against the New York Knicks on Dec. 14.
An NFT is a singular digital item such as an image, artwork or music video that is sold using cryptocurrency and blockchain technology.
Under Armour (NYSE: UAA) partnered with New York creative agency Berlin Cameron to design the digital sneaker. Five versions of the Genesis Curry Flow were made available and they sold out in just a few minutes. Each pair sold for $333, with all of the net revenue from primary sales being donated to organizations that support access to sports.
Ewen Cameron, founder of Berlin Cameron, said in a statement his firm “wanted to do something that truly changed the metaverse game for good” by creating a digital sneaker that actually has some sort of functionality.
“While NFT and Metaverse have become the buzz words of our industry this year, most brand work has basically been about JPEGs you can use as a profile picture,” Cameron said.
Each of the NFTs sold by Under Armour can be “worn” by users in the Gala Games, Decentraland and Sandbox gaming platforms.
Under Armour is the latest footwear company to make a play in the metaverse. The metaverse is a term used to describe the online virtual world many see as the future for interaction. In the metaverse, users can immerse themselves in digital content rather than simply view it.
Rival company Adidas recently launched its first line of NFT products and reportedly earned about $23 million.
Industry giant Nike Inc. last week acquired RTFKT, a company that makes digital sneakers. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, though Business Insider reported RTFKT was valued at $33 million in May.
Read full story on Baltimore Business Journal