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  • Writer's pictureEugenie Mae

The Future of Adidas: Token-Gated Sneaker Drops on the Horizon?

Adidas is considering incorporating a cryptocurrency into their Web3 plans. However, this endeavor is not as straightforward as just installing a payment plugin.

"We've talked about it, but I don't know if that's really solving a problem," says Erika Wykes-Snyeyd.

According to Erika Wykes-Sneyd, Adidas' Web3 lead, the company is exploring token-gated sneaker releases. However, she noted during NFT Paris 2023 that Adidas is not yet convinced that this approach would fill any gaps in the industry. Adidas sees the use of cryptocurrencies and payment plugins as just a starting point for potential future sneaker drops.

Adidas made its initial move into Web3 technology in December 2021 by buying a Bored Ape NFT from BAYC. This was followed by their "Into the Metaverse" launch in the same month, which generated $23.4 million USD in sales in just one afternoon. Wykes-Sneyd briefly mentioned the potential use of cryptocurrency and token-based strategies for future product releases. This would allow crypto communities to combat the current problem of automated bots buying up all the sneakers, instead of having to fight against them.

“There are interesting payments in Apecoin and some of the other coins that are coming out that could be even more surprising if Adidas was going to maybe gate exclusive drops for specific communities and specific currencies,” she said. “I think that’s something that might be more compelling to us…that’s stuff we’re starting to scope out now.”

In other news within the world of sneakers, RTFKT unveiled a prototype for Cryptokicks iRL, which it claimed to be the world's first Web3 sneaker last December. It incorporates the latest in smart sneaker technology and pays tribute to the limited-edition Nike Mag, the futuristic auto-lacing metallic shoes that were featured in the 1989 movie "Back to the Future 2".

Within the realm of high fashion, Balmain has announced the release of a digital version of its $1,200 USD "Unicorn" sneaker, which will be available for purchase alongside the physical shoes in an upcoming sale that is scheduled to launch in March.

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