Video game retailer and darling of memestock GameStop is making a big bet on NFTs and cryptocurrency technology. According to a new report from The Wall Street Journal, the company has assembled a team of more than 20 people working on an online marketplace for virtual items, which could include cosmetic skins and in-game items.
The company is reportedly courting game developers and publishers to list NFTs in its market, and hopes to make deals with crypto companies to develop the underlying technology and help invest in games using NFT and blockchain technology. In total, the WSJ reports that GameStop’s investments in crypto could reach tens of millions and involve deals with more than a dozen other companies.
A spokesperson for GameStop did not immediately respond to the one on board request for comment.
The plans are believed to be part of GameStop’s attempt to turn the business around, which has been rocked in recent years as consumers turn away from physical versions to purchase games digitally online. In December, the company’s chief executive, Matt Furlong (who joined the company from Amazon last year), said the company was exploring emerging technologies and that job postings relating to Web3 and NFT had already been published in October.
the WSJ notes that gamers are seen as potential early adopters of NFTs in particular, as they’re already comfortable spending money on virtual goods like cosmetic outfits and weapon skins. Square Enix and EA have publicly expressed an interest in exploring the technology, and Ubisoft launched an NFT platform late last year.
But so far, much of the response from players to in-game NFTs has been downright hostile, with many seeing them as of little value to the overall gaming experience, and representing a marketing exercise by companies. who have been happy for years to sell virtual. items without the need for blockchain technology. S.TALKER 2: Heart of Chernobyl Developer GSC Game World quickly backtracked on its NFT plans after they received widespread criticism, while Valve has said it will not allow games using the technology on its Steam games store.
the WSJGameStop’s report comes about a year after GameStop found itself at the center of a trading frenzy, as some day traders attempted to raise its share price and punish short sellers. But despite the investment and recovery attempts, the company continues to be in poor financial health. Last month, he reported that his losses were getting worse, despite some revenue growth. The company’s stock price has fallen over the past month and a half, although CNBC reports that its stock price rose more than 22 percent as a result of the WSJreport on its NFT plans.