Quick take:
Sports apparel company, PUMA, today announced the unveiling of its first-ever metaverse website experience called Black Station. It features exclusive NFTs with limited edition redeemable physical sneakers, as part of its ‘Futrograde’ show during New York Fashion Week (NYFW).
PUMA Black Station is created as an immersive and interactive portal for consumers to experience the future of the brand. Its blank and evolving canvas will also become a dynamic destination connecting consumers with PUMA’s various Web3 activations emerging over the course of the next year and beyond.
On the metaverse website, visitors will enter a hyper-realistic digital lobby space with three separate portals. The first two portals, accessible from Sep 7, will unveil exclusive never-seen-before Nitro NFRNO and Nitro Fastroid sneakers linked to PUMA’s recent Nitropass NFT mint. The sneakers made their debut at NYFW.
Fastroid features a performance tech silhouette to the extreme with exaggerated volumes of Nitro foam in gradient high-impact hues. With “sport is art” as the guiding ambition, NFRNO appears like a hybrid collision of the past and future, drawing inspiration from obscure archive styles to arrive at a multi-part molded construction.
“Twenty years ago, Black Station was PUMA’s home for our most innovative designs in fashion,” said Adam Petrick, PUMA’s Chief Brand Officer. “Given the boundaries we are pushing from a product design and digital standpoint, we found it fitting to bring Black Station back as a new portal for digital exploration across fashion, sport performance, our heritage classics, and innovation.”
Nitropass NFT holders can receive two NFTs – one tied to physical products and one that unlocks a customised experience linked to their chosen shoe. Following the Futrograde show, Nitropass minters can claim their physical sneakers by burning their product-claimed NFT. This is the first PUMA-owned NFT that links digital design with in-real-life physical products for consumers.
“Our team of designers took a lot of liberties when envisioning these footwear styles. We told them the sky is the limit. As a result, we were able to harness their creativity without the typical confines and limitations of our shoe production process,” said Heiko Desens, Global Creative Director and Head of Innovation. “What is just as impressive as the actual designs is the fact that we were actually able to work with development to bring these stunning designs to life.”
The Black Station metaverse was developed by creative ventures company FTR,  and is built with Unreal Engine 5 to produce cutting-edge graphics.
Visitors can enter PUMA’s Black Station experience at blackstation.puma.com. A limited quantity of NFTs and subsequently exclusive sneakers can be redeemed.
PUMA first prepared for its entrance into the metaverse in January with new trademark applications. In August, the sportswear brand expanded its multi-year partnership with Manchester City to launch a metaverse kit on Roblox.
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