NHL Partners with Sweet for Digital Collectibles NFTs Marketplace

The National Hockey League (NHL), an organization managing 32 professional ice hockey teams in North America, announced on Thursday that it plans to launch an NFT marketplace. NHL partnered with the non-fungible token (NFT) platform Sweet to develop the project.

Dave Lehanski, NHL Executive Vice President, For Business Development and Innovation, said that the ice hockey league is proud to be launching the NHL’s official NFT digital collectables marketplace this upcoming season. The executive said the marketplace would offer such a new and innovative interactive touchpoint for NHL fans.

Lehanski further disclosed: “We invested a significant amount of time to analyze the marketplace and establish a fan-first strategy and are now thrilled to announce a partnership with a company, Sweet, that will not only provide us with a world-class digital NFT collectables experience but also a commitment to developing a comprehensive platform that is completely designed and customized for the NHL and wholly focused on connecting with hockey fans in the most authentic and engaging manner possible.”

The National Hockey League has signed a multiyear deal with NFT platform Sweet – a partnership that will see Sweet create NFTs featuring cinematic, high-definition moments, and become NHL’s official digital collectables marketplace that allows NHL fans to trade and collect NFTs.

The anticipated NFT marketplace will allow fans to purchase digital collectables based on recent and historic NHL video footage from iconic moments in the competition’s rich history.

The digital collectables will include both the latest and archival NHL’s video moments. The collectables will feature previous and current NHL players, including the likes of Wayne Gretzky, Tie Domi, Sidney Crosby, and Mario Lemieux, among others.

The partnership marks the first time when the NHL, National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA) and NHL Alumni Association (NHLAA) come together to release videos and other collectables.

The NHL said Sweet’s simplified user interface will easily engage first-time NFT owners as well as gamify features within the marketplace, like quizzes and challenges, and also allow fans to interact with each other.

Sweet’s other sporting clients include the NBA’s New York Knicks, the McLaren and Red Bull Formula One teams, and the Australian Open tennis tournament, the report indicated.

NFTs Defining the New Sports Industry

NFTs have penetrated the art market and are now rapidly expanding into the sports market. The announcement by the National Hockey League follows several other major league sports associations embracing NFTs.

Throughout the world of sports, NFTs are being used to unlock new channels for creative expression, fan engagement, and revenue generation.

Most of the world’s watched leagues, such as the National Basketball Association (NBA), Major League Baseball (MLB), the National Football League (NFL), and the National Hockey League (NHL), are releasing NFT collectables that digitize current and past beloved traditions of trading cards and memorabilia.

In this way, such sports leagues are not only providing their fans with a new way to engage with their favourite sports but also a way for themselves to earn new sources of revenue.

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Quidd Launches New Platform Mintables, Enabling Users to Mint Digital Collectibles into NFTs

Animoca Brands and its digital collectables market subsidiary Quidd announced on Tuesday that it has launched Mintables, a feature that enables users to mint and un-mint digital collectables into NFTs on the Ethereum blockchain.

In a statement, Animoca said that Mintables will make minting of NFTs easier and cheaper for beginners and remove the need for cryptocurrency to do so, while the assets remain interoperable with major Ethereum NFT marketplaces such as OpenSea and Rarible.

Mintables solves several challenges facing the NFT industry. First, minting NFTs has been a difficult and expensive thing for many crypto novices. Therefore, with the launch of With Mintables, Quidd will significantly reduce the cost, time, and complexity for mainstream users to make their first mint. In this case, such crypto novices will only need a self-custody wallet like MetaMask to make their minting, no cryptocurrency is required.

Seasoned NFT users also face difficulty because officially licensed branded NFTs are normally locked down in centralized applications and custodial wallets. Mintables, therefore, provides seasoned NFT enthusiasts with off-the-shelf interoperability with major Ethereum NFT marketplaces, such as OpenSea and Rarible.

Besides that, Mintables enables users to remint and unmint digital collectables on new blockchains, depending on a user’s discretion. This marketplace provides unique portability that enables NFT owners to bring their NFTs to major blockchain platforms whenever they want.

Michael Bramlage, CEO and co-founder of Quidd, talked about the development: “With Mintables, we are delivering user choice in addition to true digital ownership. Why should the platform decide if a digital item should be on a blockchain, or even which blockchain? The Mintables initiative gives real power to the collectors.”

With the launch, officially licensed Atari digital collectables on Quidd are now available for minting and unminting on the Ethereum blockchain for as little as $3 per mint.  Quidd said it plans to open up more collections for minting, and will add support for more blockchains such as WAX, Flow, and Binance Smart Chain.

Mintables provides other benefits for over 7,000,000 collectors on Quidd. The firm elaborated: “Minting preserves an item’s metadata and the collector’s ownership of the item inside Quidd. Minting does not affect any ranks or status in the Quidd community, and the Quidd app aggregates both digital collectables and NFTs in a single collection interface.”

Acquired by Animoca Brands in 2019, Quidd deals with the virtual collecting and trading of collectables by major brands such as football teams like Manchester United shows like Ricky and Morty, and others.

Social Media Firm Adding NFT Features

NFTs have emerged to become a leader in the digital revolution. A good number of NFT platforms such as Axie Infinity, Nifty Gateway, Binance, OpenSea, Solanart, Stashh, Decentraland, Rarible, and others, have come to provide NFTs services to users. Even Social media networks like Meta Inc., and Twitter, among others are jumping on the NFT bandwagon.

The social media craze began when the ‘Twitter Blue’ account users were allowed to put NFTs as profile pictures. A few months later, Meta launched 3D Avatars for Facebook, Messenger, and Instagram and enabled users in Mexico, Canada, and the US to beam their virtual selves across apps via feed posts, stickers, and profile pictures. YouTube also recently started the distribution of personalized NFTs to the influencers on the platform. Reddit also has rolled out a first test for changing profile pictures with an NFT.

The global NFT market size reached $340 million in 2020 and is projected to hit $3,50,000 million in 2030. As more and more firms, artists, producers, and users connect with it, the growth of the NFT industry rises.

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NFT Surpasses Crypto and Ethereum in Google Searches

Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) continue to be trending issues. To show their trendiness, NFT Google searches have surpassed those of Ethereum and crypto, according to Google Trends. 

Interest for Bitcoin remains steadfast at the first position, with NFTs coming second. Crypto and Ethereum come at the third and fourth positions, respectively.

Source: Google Trends

Asian nations lead in NFT Google search, with Japan, South Korea, and Hong Kong taking the first, second, and third positions, respectively. 

Source: Google Trends

The result is based on the fact that NFT adoption has been experiencing an uptick on Asian soil. For instance, the South Korean Movie industry entered the NFT world in December 2021 by offering merchandise and collectable tickets. Therefore, NFTs are deemed a game-changer in the Korean movie sector by attracting more viewers. 

Furthermore, Hindustan Times (HT), India’s largest English language newspaper, recently commemorated iconic moments with an NFT collection. 

Nigel Green, the CEO of DeVere Group, opined that the NFT boom was instigated by the rally around digital collectables by celebrities around the world, fashion brands, and sports franchises.

Meanwhile, the world’s first NFT museum recently opened its doors in Seattle, Washington, aimed at expanding people’s knowledge base about non-fungible tokens and showcasing works by local and international artists. 

The 3,000 square-foot museum is not online and is centred on minting a new art world. Furthermore, it comprises three exhibition platforms where visitors can see 30 NFT artwork displays in each area. 

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Marvel and DC bar comic book artists from selling superhero NFTs

Marvel and DC seem to be breaking away from the established tradition of allowing creators and artists to sell original prints of published works due to their reported plans for entry into the nonfungible token (NFT) space.

According to Bloomberg, the two comic book staples have barred artists from selling NFTs of the characters they create for the company.

Both Marvel and DC reportedly have designs on leveraging their vast collection of comic book art in the expanding NFT scene, potentially a new market for selling collectibles.

Indeed, Marvel has already made forays into the NFT space, selling digital collectibles of the Spider-Man character back in August.

By preventing artists from selling derivative works based on their comic book creations, the likes of Marvel and DC could be precluding creators from a significant revenue source.

Indeed, there has been some controversy over the lack of significant payments made to comic book artists from the success of derivative media such as Hollywood movies based on their superheroes.

However, Bloomberg reported that Marvel plans to provide secondary revenue opportunities for artists and creators on the VeVe platform.

Related: Marvel reveals official NFTs will be available on VeVe marketplace by 2022

Marvel and DC selling NFTs is part of a broader trend involving major franchises interacting with the nonfungible token space.

The NFT market has risen from an obscure crypto niche to become a noticeable sector of the expanding digital economy.

Corporate brands have begun to target the NFT space by launching digital collectibles and acquiring popular NFTs. In August, card payment giant Visa splashed about $150,000 on Crypto Punk #7610.

However, the massive growth experienced in the summer months seems to have waned considerably, with NFT volume on OpenSea down 50% as previously reported by Cointelegraph.

Apart from trading activity, sales and floor prices of “blue-chip NFTs” have also plummeted in September.