Earlier in September, Puma announced the launch of its Metaverse experience called “Black Station.” Can Puma compete with Nike in the Metaverse?
Ever since Nike acquired RTFKT Studios last year, sportswear brands have been upping their game in the digital world. However, other than Nike, brands haven’t been able to adapt to Web3.
As we reported, Nike has been dominating the NFT space with over $93 million made from various digital collaborations. Other brands failed to crack the $10 million mark.
This month, Puma decided to take a stand and compete with Nike in the Metaverse.
What is the Black Station?
On September 7, Puma sent out a press release to all major publications announcing the launch of Black Station. The digital space will be “a dynamic destination to visit” where fans of Puma will be able to interact with their favorite brand.
According to Adam Petrick, the brand’s Chief Officer, nearly two decades ago, the Black Station has been a hub for innovative designers and a place where Puma could showcase its newest, futuristic designs.
Now, they’ve revived the website giving it a new, Web3 makeover.
Puma’s New Creative Journey
The consumers’ attention span is continuously decreasing. In order to stay ahead of their competitors, brands need to be creative and boundary-pushing. Puma has taken on this challenge by diving into the Metaverse.
Heiko Desens, Puma’s Head of Innovation, stated that the Metaverse has no restrictions, which means that its designers can create original designs that are out-of-this-world.
From the moment a customer enter’s the Black Station, they can go into a hyper-realistic 3D lobby and enter one of the three portals there. These portals all house brand-new sneakers.
The users can use their NitroPass passes to collect unique NFTs. Each NFT is linked to a physical product, which the user can claim once Puma’s Futograde fair is over.
Can Puma Compete with Nike?
It’s exciting to see big brands like Puma allowing their designers to take so many liberties with footwear design. As Desens explains, the brand executives told their designers that the “sky’s the limit” and to create whatever they wanted.
This is a stark contrast to a decade ago when sportswear companies were very risk-averse. Puma has been able to stay afloat and even grow during the pandemic while many other brands have taken a hit.
But will Puma be able to take on Nike in the Metaverse? Nike has made more off NFTs than D7G, Tiffany, and Adidas combined. And those are some of the most recognizable fashion and sportswear brands in the world.
Adidas was even the first to bet on the Metaverse, however, due to problems that occurred during the launch of the collection, the brand was forced to publically apologize.
Going Beyond the Real World
The Metaverse is the perfect place for brands to experiment with new designs and concepts. And with Black Station, Puma has set the bar high for other brands.
It’ll be interesting to see if Puma can keep up the momentum and compete with Nike in the digital world. After all, Nike has been killing it in the Metaverse ever since they entered the scene.