Recently, LI-NING’s official Weibo stated “Invited Bored Ape Yacht Club, a famous family from Web3.0, number#4102 BAYC, as the fashion store manager of the LI-NING pop-up store”. According to the information previously released by LI-NING’s official WeChat account, it was found that LI-NING will associate with #4102 BAYC show-up in Beijing pop-up store on April 28. LI-NING with #4102 BAYC will create a new series of products based on the #4102 design. According to the LI-NING Weibo release, a new design idea “bored fashion” will try to give people a different experience with a totally new design style. Speculations have arisen about the event having a “KUSO” creation on Mr. Li Ning the Olympic gymnastics champion. LI-NING also announced a series of activities such as frisbee and locomotives, intending to drive more people to participate in new sports together, convening a concept that “bored is not that boring, as sporty as fashionable”.
Does the LI-NING x BAYC series signal the sports brand’s engagement in the NFT market?
This event has attracted the attention of many people. As soon as the news was released, the blockchain media and NFT communities in China started talking about it. As the first Chinese brand in the NFT market to featuring the BAYC image, the association of LI-NING will undoubtedly benefit the recently down market. Obviously, the “onlookers” are curious about what BAYC is, why is BAYC so expensive, and why would LI-NING use it as the new design series? LI-NING this time has undoubtedly built a bridge between Web2.0 and Web3.0, allowing Web2.0 users to know what NFT is, and bringing NFT and BAYC to public users. The company has brought great value to NFTs, and it has also made its millions of Chinese users feel that the era of NFT is coming.
With the vigorous development of digital art in the past years, the NFT market has successfully “broken the line” and has become the “superstar” of the digital art market. Since last year, whether it is Porsche, Valentino, Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, Givenchy, Alibaba, Tencent, and other giants in the traditional fashion industry, catering, luxury goods, or automobiles, have tried to get involved in this industry. Celebrities like Eminem, Justin Bieber, Neymar, Stephen Curry, etc. have also been associated with the NFT craze.
It turns out that more brands and celebrities have entered the NFT market, trying to create NFT derivatives with their influence in the real world and deploy NFT products to superimpose brand value with the scarcity and uniqueness of NFT. And the influence of personal IP to increase value empowerment. Combining NFT artworks with actual products and recreations, also allows everyone to see the practical application value of NFT in addition to being the entrance, identity symbol, or avatar in Metaverse, it can also be a variety of trendy items in daily wear and use, showing the value of NFT and self-expression.
Value superposition of NFTs, the Brand IP, and Sports
Speaking of the BAYC, it is the “OG” of the NFT industry, this project was launched in March 2021 and quickly detonated the blockchain field and Web3.0 community. The floor price has risen 1338 times from 0.08ETH on the day of issuance. Justin Bieber bought a BAYC NFT for $1.29 million (500ETH), Jimmy Fallon bought a BAYC with a striped T-shirt and sunglasses at a high price of $220,000, and Eminem Spend $460,000 to become a BAYC holder. What is it that makes top stars so crazy that they have used their BAYCs as their personal social account profile photo? The price has gone up all the way till today. Topics like Stephen Curry’s $180,000 portrait and Jay Chou (King of Mandopop) claiming his $500,000 worth of money has been stolen.” are making the general audience curious about NFTs and BAYC.
#2087 BAYC, 769ETH
In addition to the hot wave of offline peripheral related products, Yuga Labs, the founder team of BAYC, also associated with the “10:22 PM” to establish KINGSHIP – an idol group consisting of a mutant ape and three bored apes. Timbaland also used his bored ape as a virtual musician and signed the BAYC hip-hop group TheZoo to promote NFT music. The hot discussion in the community, the frequent exposure on social media, and the creative creations on BAYC have made this bored monkey not boring at all. Even if you don’t know NFT, you must have known this monkey.
The influence of BAYC not only plays an important role in the development of the NFT market, but also creates more possibilities through co-creation with music, fashion, and other fields. So why is LI-NING associating with BAYC? Is LI-NING trying to use BAYC and enter into the Metaverse?
Now, whether it is NFT or blockchain, new business models are prompting enterprises or brands to transform and move closer to Web 3.0, just like the Internet wave, due to the fear of missing out and being left behind by the market. Most companies and brands are using the Web3.0 marketing model, transforming the user’s virtual role from exaggerated play to a real-life value embodiment, realizing the transformation of Web3.0. However, very few companies have used the heatwave of Web3.0 to reverse the value-added of traditional markets.
When everyone want to enter NFT and the Metaverse market, LI-NING made NFT into branded products through BAYC design. Its own brand value and influence, superimposed on the commercial value and attention of the BAYC NFT, have made new changes for LI-NING’s own products, not only popularizing the NFT trend market to the public but also letting everyone know more about the value of the Metaverse world. The value of the BAYC NFT is the recognition of the digital identity, so the bored ape wearing LI-NING clothing is undoubtedly a synthesis of promoting sports culture, pop culture, and value consensus from LI-NING’s perspective. As LI-NING brand itself is a promoter of sports and pop culture, the brand believes in the process of involving in the Metaverse field to bring about different pop culture and sports Metaverse journeys.
The 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics made “Bingdundun” successfully popped up all over the world, and the official NFT blind box was launched online. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) also launched a game about the Winter Olympics under the NFT hot tendency. Players can get an Olympic NFT badge through the game. The combination of NFT and the traditional sports market not only makes the NFT market more “normal to the real world”, but also opens up a new business model for the traditional market. According to a report by investment bank Jefferies, the market value of NFTs will grow from $14 billion today to $75 billion by 2025, and most of the growth will be driven by the sports NFT market. The main stadium of the Los Angeles Lakers has changed its name to “Crypto”.
The sports culture is used as a bridge to connect the tradition of Web2.0 and the trend of Web3.0. Traditional enterprises realize Web3.0 marketing through NFT layout, and Web3.0 empowers Web2.0 by NFT. NFT marketing + brand + sports culture is also very likely to become the “Next Big Thing” driven by traditional and crypto markets.
As the representative of the Chinese sports brand and the pioneer of sports culture, LI-NING integrates the BAYC bored ape as a design element and launches products as a new series, bringing Web3.0 into real life. Through the development of pop culture activities such as skateboards, motorcycles, and frisbees, and at the same time promoting the spirit of “life attitude”, which is also in line with the concept of current NFT followers: “more creation, more attitude, more value, and more for life”.
From the fashion brands’ perspectives, BAYC bored ape as the shop managers in LI-NING pop-up store can be used as a prototype online to carry out the Metaverse Bored Ape Model Fashion Week. The accessories are mainly based on the actual design products of LI-NING, or launch an online dress-up store, carry out different clothing match or DIY designs, and sell offline physical products. In this way, everyone can participate in LI-NING’s design, and the creators of the designs that are used for sale can also get a certain percentage. But these are all some thoughts of possibilities for the future development of LI-NING.
Besides, researching other sports-related projects, Sorare, an Ethereum football blockchain game, uses football player cards as NFT collections. And the Boxing Boyz Metaverse, an NFT cooperative Metaverse game by Boxing Hall of Famer Floyd Mayweather Jr, is a virtual world game that integrates boxing. Or NBA released the NFT series, The Association. So will Li-NING associate with other brands to establish the Metaverse Olympic Games, integrating traditional sports such as table tennis, gymnastics, basketball, etc., or other pop culture sports such as frisbee and motorcycles?
Different from the traditional competition in which the country is the representative team, the Metaverse Olympics can follow the example of the Zoo bored ape music idol group in the form of a free group combination, form its own sports club, and participate in various competitions. Combining products, or casting group clothing through NFT DIY, with the logo of LI-NING, these imaginations have not only seen more creative gameplay for NFT promotion but also empower more value to NFT, building up a new business model for the traditional market.
NFT not only meets the needs of sports fans without violating the spirit of sports but also opens a new door for the sports market and traditional IP brands. Sports leagues, athletes, and other celebrities in real life gain popularity among fans and consumers, and the new economic model of NFT, sports, and pop culture will be more convenient and efficient. LI-NING’s NFT journey in the near future starts by integrating Web3.0 into real life and building the Metaverse scene physically.
Disclaimer: This is a paid post and should not be treated as news/advice.