Puma, the German sportswear giant, has announced the unveiling of its first-ever metaverse website experience called Black Station. It features exclusive non-fungible tokens (NFTs) of redeemable limited-edition physical sneakers that will launch as part of the “Futrograde” show during ongoing New York Fashion Week (NYFW). Puma Black Station aims to be an immersive and interactive portal for consumers to experience the future of the brand. Puma now joins Adidas Originals as the latest sportswear brand to launch digital collectibles.
On the metaverse website, visitors enter a hyper-realistic digital lobby space with three separate portals. Accessible from September 7, the first two portals will reveal exclusive never-before-seen Nitro NFRNO and Nitro Fastroid sneakers paired with Puma’s recent Nitropass NFT coin. The sneakers made their debut at NYFW.
The Black Station metaverse was created by venture company FTR. The metaverse was designed with Unreal Engine 5 with support for advanced graphics.
“Twenty years ago, Black Station was Puma’s home to 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 felt it was fitting to bring Black Station back as a new portal for digital exploration of fashion, sports performance, our classic classics and innovation.”
It’s worth noting that this isn’t Puma’s first foray into Web 3. Earlier this year, Puma integrated NFTs into a sponsorship campaign with Manchester City football club, including limited edition NFTs of Puma shoes worn by footballer Sergio Aguero.
Puma’s Futrograde collection is the latest in a trend of clothing and luxury brands releasing physical items linked to digital assets called ‘phygitals’. In May of this year, the luxury brand Prada released NFTs that could be exchanged for physical items such as shirts.
Puma’s use of a metaverse space isn’t new either. Brands like Tommy Hilfiger and Estee Lauder have designed similar spaces where individuals can take a closer look at the digital representations of their products.