Recently, LI-NING’s official Weibo said “Guest Bored Ape Yacht Club, a famous family of Web3.0, number #4102 BAYC, as a fashion store manager of LI-NING pop-up store”. According to information previously released by LI-NING’s official WeChat account, it has been found that LI-NING will join in the #4102 BAYC exhibition in the Beijing pop-up store on April 28th. LI-NING with #4102 BAYC will create a new series of products based on the #4102 design. According to LI-NING Weibo’s version, a new design idea “bored fashion” will try to give people a different experience with a totally new design style. Speculation has arisen about the event having a “KUSO” creation about Mr. Li Ning, the Olympic gymnastics champion. LI-NING also announced a series of activities such as frisbee and locomotives, aiming to inspire more people to participate in new sports together, summoning a concept that “boredom is not so boring, too sporty than fashionable”.
Does the LI-NING x BAYC series signal the sports brand’s commitment to the NFT market?
This event caught the attention of many people. As soon as the news broke, blockchain media and NFT communities in China started talking about it. As the first Chinese brand in the NFT market to sport the BAYC image, LI-NING’s association will undoubtedly benefit the recently declining market. Obviously, the “viewers” are curious about what BAYC is, why is BAYC so expensive, and why would LI-NING use it as a new design series? This time, LI-NING has undoubtedly built a bridge between Web2.0 and Web3.0, letting Web2.0 users 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 NFTs is approaching.
With the vigorous development of digital art in recent years, the NFT market has succeeded in “breaking the line” and 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, restaurant, luxury or automotive industry, 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 layer brand value with rarity and character. unique to the NFT. And the influence of personal intellectual property to increase value empowerment. The combination of NFT artworks with actual products and recreations also allows everyone to see the practical application value of NFT besides being the entrance, identity symbol or avatar in Metaverse , it can also be a variety of fashionable items for daily wear and use, showing the value of NFT and self-expression.
Value overlay of NFTs, brand IP and sports
Speaking of BAYC, it is the “OG” of the NFT industry, this project was launched in March 2021 and quickly blew up the blockchain field and the Web3.0 community. The floor price increased 1338 times from 0.08ETH on the day of issuance. Justin Bieber bought a BAYC NFT for $1.29 million (500 ETH), Jimmy Fallon bought a BAYC with a striped t-shirt and sunglasses at the high price of $220,000, and Eminem spent 460,000 $ to become a BAYC holder. What makes top stars so crazy that they used their BAYCs as their personal social account profile picture? The price has increased until today. Topics like the $180,000 portrait of Stephen Curry and Jay Chou (the King of Mandopop) claiming his $500,000 cash was stolen. make the general public curious about NFTs and BAYC.
In addition to the wave of offline device-related products, Yuga Labs, the founding team of BAYC, also teamed up with “22:22” to create KINGSHIP – an idol group consisting of a mutant monkey and three bored monkeys. Timbaland also used his bored monkey as a virtual musician and signed hip-hop group BAYC TheZoo to promote NFT music. Lively discussions in the community, frequent social media exposure, and creative postings on BAYC made this bored monkey not boring at all. Even if you don’t know NFT, you must have known this monkey.
BAYC’s influence 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 partnering with BAYC? Does LI-NING try to use BAYC and enter the Metaverse?
Now, whether it’s NFT or blockchain, new business models are pushing companies or brands to transform and move closer to Web 3.0, like the Internet wave, for fear of missing out. and to be left behind by the market. Most enterprises and brands are using the Web3.0 marketing model, transforming the user’s virtual role from an exaggerated game into an embodiment of real value, realizing the transformation of Web3.0. However, very few companies have taken advantage of the Web3.0 heat wave to reverse the added value of traditional markets.
When everyone wants to enter NFT and Metaverse market, LI-NING has transformed NFT into branded products through BAYC design. Its own brand value and influence, superimposed on BAYC NFT’s commercial value and attention, has brought new changes to LI-NING’s own products, not only popularizing the NFT trend market to the public, but also allowing everyone to learn more about the value of the metaverse world. The value of BAYC NFT is the recognition of digital identity, so the bored monkey wearing LI-NING clothes is undoubtedly a synthesis of the promotion of sports culture, pop culture and the consensus of the values of the LI-NING’s point of view. As the LI-NING brand itself is a promoter of sports and pop culture, the brand believes in the process of involvement in the Metaverse field to bring about different Metaverse pop culture and sports journey.
The 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics successfully made “Bingdundun” appear worldwide, and the official NFT blind box was launched online. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has also launched a game about the Winter Olympics under the NFT hot trend. Players can get an Olympic NFT badge throughout 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, with most of the growth being driven by the sports NFT market . The main stadium of the Los Angeles Lakers has changed its name to “Crypto”.
Sports culture is used as a bridge to connect the tradition of Web2.0 and the trend of Web3.0. Traditional enterprises achieve Web3.0 marketing through NFT layout, and Web3.0 strengthens Web2.0 by NFT. NFT marketing + branding + sports culture are also very likely to become the “Next Big Thing” driven by traditional and crypto markets.
As a representative of Chinese sports brand and a pioneer of sports culture, LI-NING incorporates bored monkey BAYC as a design element and launches products as a new series, bringing Web3.0 into real life . By developing 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 perspective of fashion brands, BAYC Bored Ape, as store managers in the LI-NING pop-up store, can be used as an online prototype to carry out Metaverse Bored Ape Model Fashion Week. Accessories are mainly based on LI-NING’s actual design products, or launch an online dress-up store, make different clothing combinations or DIY designs, and sell physical products offline. In this way, everyone can participate in the design of LI-NING, and the creators of the designs used for sale can also get a certain percentage. But these are just a few ideas of possibilities for the future development of LI-NING.
Also, researching other sports-related projects, Sorare, an Ethereum soccer blockchain game, uses soccer player cards as NFT collections. And the Boxing Boyz Metaverse, an NFT cooperative Metaverse game from Boxing Hall of Famer Floyd Mayweather Jr, is a virtual world game that incorporates boxing. Or NBA released the NFT series, The Association. So will Li-NING join forces with other brands to establish the Metaverse Olympics, integrating traditional sports like table tennis, gymnastics, basketball, etc., or other sports pop culture like frisbee and motorbike?
Different from the traditional competition in which the country is the representative team, the Metaverse Olympics can follow the example of music idol group Zoo bored ape in the form of a combination of free group, form its own club sports and participate in various competitions. By combining products or casting group clothes through NFT DIY, with LI-NING’s logo, these imaginations not only saw more creative gameplay for NFT promotion, but also gave more value to NFT, creating 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 real-life celebrities are gaining popularity with fans and consumers, and the new NFT, sports and pop culture business model will be more convenient and efficient. LI-NING’s NFT journey in the near future begins with the integration of Web3.0 into real life and the physical construction of the Metaverse scene.
Disclaimer: This is a paid publication and should not be considered news or advice.