- Amazon is reportedly launching an NFT initiative.
- Sources familiar with the matter told Blockworks the e-commerce giant is also targeting blockchain games.
- The company wants to let people play blockchain games and collect free NFTs, one source said.
Amazon’s business empire is about to get bigger according to reports on Thursday evening. The e-commerce giant is reportedly looking to dive into the wild west of NFTs and blockchain games, Blockworks cited sources familiar with the matter.
According to the report, the company plans to make public its NFTs and blockchain gaming initiatives at the start of the second quarter of 2023. The digital assets enterprise will be joining a long list of products and businesses that the company has added to its portfolio since starting off as a bookstore in the late 1990s.
This is not the first time the technology giant has been linked with a foray into web3. In April last year, Amazon CEO Andy Jassy told CNBC the company could start selling NFTs, despite pushing any hopes of the e-commerce platform accepting crypto further down the line.
“We’re not probably close to adding crypto as a payment mechanism in our retail business, but I do believe over time that you’ll see crypto become bigger,” he said, adding, “I think it’s possible [we will offer NFTs] down the road on the platform.”
The company recently announced a partnership with Ava Labs, the organisation behind layer-1 blockchain Avalanche. In a blog post published on January 11, 2023, Amazon said this partnership would accelerate transaction processing times and lower related costs.
“Imagine a world where transactions—selling a house, trading an asset, paying out a claim—finalize in seconds or less. Contract, payment, and receipts are all tied together in a single action, with the history of the trade permanently logged,” the company wrote.
Amazon is also listed as an investor in the digital collectibles marketplace Dibbs. The company has been more active than reported, mainly focusing on “layer-1 blockchains, blockchain-based gaming startups and developers and digital asset exchanges,” a source told Blockworks.
According to the report, one of the primary goals of Amazon’s NFT initiatives involves allowing people to play blockchain games and collect free NFTs. The company’s decision to get involved more in crypto is seen as a huge advantage for the industry.
Amazon boasts a market cap of more than $1 trillion, which would make it one of the biggest mainstream tech companies to offer NFTs. Unlike several other tech companies that have dropped NFTs, Amazon’s ecosystem, which includes Amazon Web Services, Prime Video, the e-commerce store and several others provides it with a multi-faceted opportunity to implement its web3 strategy.
The company also enjoys strong user interaction with its products with Prime surpassing 200 million subscribers while more than 197 million people visit its e-commerce platform every month, according to Statista.
Amazon “coming into the space” is “a big one” for crypto, a source said, adding “We knew it was possible. But now it seems like it’s really happening. That’s going to affect the existing players in the space — if they execute and do this right and are smart about it.”
According to another source, the Amazon team spearheading the NFT initiative have already reached out to one family office. Although initial plans involved dopping one NFT collection with an artist, the company’s web3 plans seem to have changed significantly over the past few months.
Amazon’s decision to take a more serious approach to NFTs could see the company build on the success of recent project launches. In October 2022, Reddit sold more than $10 million worth of NFT avatars in just three months.
The social news aggregation platform helped onboard millions into the world of NFTs, thanks to its massive user base. Amazon could achieve similar success.
“With the [number] of customers Amazon has, they could make a huge splash in the NFT marketplace,” one source said.
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