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Nike buys virtual sneaker maker RTFKT in metaverse push – Metro US

Nike buys virtual sneaker maker RTFKT in metaverse push

A silhouette of a woman wearing a protective face shield
A silhouette of a woman wearing a protective face shield and a protective face mask is seen near to a Nike logo at a shopping mall on the first day after the government eased restrictions amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Jakarta

(Reuters) – Nike Inc said on Monday it had bought virtual sneaker company RTFKT for an undisclosed sum, as the sportswear giant looks to quickly expand its footprint in the fast-growing “metaverse”.

Last month, Nike became one of the first big brands to enter the shared virtual world that gained prominence after Facebook Inc recently rebranded itself to Meta Platforms Inc.

In such blockchain-based environments, users can buy virtual land and other digital assets such as clothing for avatars in the form of a crypto asset called a non-fungible token (NFT).

Formed in 2020 by Benoit Pagotto, Chris Le and Steven Vasilev, RTFKT also makes NFT collectibles and memes, according to its website.

“This acquisition is another step that accelerates Nike’s digital transformation and allows us to serve athletes and creators at the intersection of sport, creativity, gaming and culture,” Nike Chief Executive Officer John Donahoe said in a statement.

(This story corrects company name in headline to RTFKT).

(Reporting by Praveen Paramasivam in Bengaluru)

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