The Biggest Brands Selling NFTs: Nike, Disney, Budweiser and more
by corporate trash
Big brands are investing in NFTs at a faster rate than ever, as they discover innovative ways to connect with their community on the blockchain. From sports, to gaming, to consumer products and beyond, even traditional companies are exploring how NFTs can market their business and reach new people.
Brands are selling NFTs for membership, event tickets, art pieces, collectibles, and other utilities. From Nike to the NBA to Disney, let’s take a look at some of the most notable brands selling NFTs today.
These brands represent a selection of those who are selling NFTs, but there are more involved in the space every day.
Many sports and athletes (both major league and college) are involved with NFTs. The NFL, UFC, and NBA work with Dapper Labs on the Flow blockchain for their NFT offerings, each featuring collectible highlights of the best moments from each league. The MLB offers its NFTs through Candy Digital. Fantasy soccer NFT platform Sorare offers digital collectibles of the world’s best players, with over 100,000 collectors, and is set to add the English Premier League soon.
With new NCAA rules, many up and coming players are making NFTs to make money while in school and connect to their fans and community. Candy offers college basketball and football NFTs through their Sweet Futures collection. Many individual players are releasing their own NFTs as well. Kansas Athletics rolled out NFTs for their men’s basketball team in 2022.
Consumer Product NFTs
Automotive company Kia got involved with NFTs around the Super Bowl 2022 on the Tezos blockchain, giving early access to their “Robo Dog” mascot NFTs. The NFTs were free to mint.
Disney offers NFT collectibles through VeVe, but the legendary company is also hiring for many roles that involve NFTs and the metaverse.
Gary Vaynerchuk’s company VaynerNFT helped Budweiser launch their Budverse Cans, and is working with them on additional NFT launches for 2022. Budweiser says: “Each NFT will act as an entry key to the Budverse, unlocking exclusive benefits, rewards and surprises for all 21+ (or legal drinking age) NFT holders.”
It was massive news when Nike announced they were straight up buying RTFKT Studios, marking perhaps the first time a major brand has acquired a Web3 brand. They are investing in the metaverse in a major way, and are hiring many relevant positions including a Metaverse Director.
Adidas teamed up with Bored Ape Yacht Club, Pixel Vault, and Gmoney to create Adidas Original NFTs, which will be used for future merch access and other utility. The drop was called “Into the Metaverse” and promises several perks for holders.
VaynerNFT advised Pepsi when they launched their Mic Drop NFT collection. There are 1,893 tokens as a nod to the year that Pepsi was founded.
Coca Cola did a 72-hour NFT auction of “Friendship Boxes” benefitting the Special Olympics, with a party in Decentraland beforehand.
Interestingly, AMC has offered two different NFT collections to its investors on WAX — one commemorating Spider-Man: No Way Home, and another one simply saying: “I Own AMC.”
Playboy is using NFTs and Web3 to boost its image. It has launched its own bunny “Rabbitars” NFTs and plans to build a mansion in the metaverse.
Gaming Company NFTs
Atari dropped a 10,000 NFT collection of Collectible Boxes on WAX, with six different editions based on their classic games. Atari also owns land in The Sandbox Game, built a metaverse casino, and is highly interested in Web3 and the metaverse.
Major gaming player Ubisoft launched Ubisoft Digits, the first playable NFTs in the Ubisoft Quartz experience. The company is exploring new ways for their users to own in-game items throughout the Ubisoft universe. Ubisoft is also the lead investor in Frontier Game, which has released NFTs leading up to their game release.
While Nintendo hasn’t yet said how they will be participating in Web3, they are aware of the possibilities and “might consider something if (they) can find a way to convey a ‘Nintendo approach’ to the metaverse.”
Music Labels in NFTs
Two out of ten available lifetime Coachella passes (“Keys”) went for over $250,000 USD each in this unique NFT auction. The passes give exclusive access to future Coachella festivals and special events at the festival.
Tech Company NFTs
While Twitter released its own NFTs in 2021 — The 140 Collection, it now has created verified NFT profile pictures to provide authenticity to NFT collectors.
Shopify announced a simple way to NFT creators to sell NFTs through the e-commerce giant, opening up a huge avenue for artists and creators.
Both Sotheby’s and Christie’s auction houses have sold many millions of dollars worth of NFTs in 2021. From Beeple to CryptoPunks to Bored Ape Yacht Club, both houses have discovered big spenders in NFTs.
Christie’s had a special NFT collection called “The Gateway” at Miami Art Basel, which were all auctioned off — signaling support for NFT art. Sotheby’s is responsible for one of the largest NFT sales of all-time from an NFT collection: CryptoPunk #7523, or Covid Alien, which sold for $11.7 million USD.
Traditional Media NFTs
Rolling Stone has featured Bored Ape Yacht Club on exclusive covers in the past, but it’s now also working with 12 NFT artists to launch another collection. This marks a new partnership between Rolling Stone and Coinbase’s upcoming NFT marketplace.
TIME Magazine was one of the earliest traditional publications to embrace NFTs. President of the magazine Keith Grossman has discussed many ideas for NFTs to be used in subscriptions and other unique access for the magazine. Their first collection was TIME Pieces, followed more recently by Slices of TIME — both collections include editioned art from prominent NFT artists.
AP (Associated Press) recently launched an NFT marketplace to sell timeless photography from their photographers. Ownership of them doesn’t mean commercial rights, however.
More Big Brands Elevating NFTs
Perhaps one of the most early and prominent NFT purchases was Visa buying a CryptoPunk for $150,000 in August 2021. While it doesn’t have NFTs of its own, Visa has continued to be bullish on NFT and crypto adoption and has a whitepaper outlining its reasoning.
Besides the fact that they literally changed their name to Meta to prepare for the metaverse, Meta is planning on integrating NFTs into Facebook and Instagram profiles.
Microsoft made a $68 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard, with a key focus to build for the metaverse — a worldwide news story when the deal was announced.
Electronics giant Samsung is making a smart TV with the ability to display your NFTs.
GameStop is partnering with Immutable X to launch an NFT marketplace later this year.
Salesforce recently told its employees that it is working on an “NFT cloud service,” apparently expressing interest to have its own NFT marketplace.
Big Brands Selling NFTs — TL;DR
Big brands have discovered NFTs and it appears they are here to stay. While the support elevates NFT adoption to more mainstream consumers, there is some controversy about brands in NFTs from the community.
The NFT community seems to be torn between celebrating NFTs gaining wider adoption, and acknowledging that the core crypto tenant of decentralization is at risk from more “corporate” NFT use.
Keep an eye out for your favorite brands to dabble in selling NFTs this year — maybe even the company you work for. If you need some help convincing them to get into NFTs, check out this useful list: 10 Things to Tell Your Friends about NFTs.