A source familiar with the subject claimed on Thursday that GameStop Corp (GME.N) is forming a division to develop a marketplace for nonfungible tokens (NFTs) and form cryptocurrency partnerships, lifting the video game retailer’s shares by 27 percent in extended trading.
The company is undergoing a makeover, with chairman Ryan Cohen bringing in executives from Amazon.com Inc to focus the company’s attention on e-commerce instead of brick-and-mortar.
GameStop did not respond to a request for comment. The story was initially reported by the Wall Street Journal, which cited sources familiar with the situation.
Shares of GameStop drop
Chairman Ryan Cohen is overhauling GameStop, bringing in executives from companies such as Amazon.com Inc to change the company’s focus away from brick-and-mortar and toward e-commerce.
According to the WSJ story, the corporation is asking chosen game developers and publishers to put NFTs on its marketplace when it launches later this year.
As a digital asset, NFTs are stored on a blockchain, which is a decentralized transaction ledger. The blockchain acts as a public ledger, allowing anyone to verify the legitimacy of the NFT and find out who owns it.
According to the WSJ story, the company has employed more than 20 individuals to oversee the unit, which is developing an online hub for buying, selling, and trading NFTs of virtual videogame artifacts like avatar clothing and weaponry.
Last year, it was at the forefront of the “meme” stock trading frenzy, in which retail investors boosted up stocks on Reddit and Robinhood, leading some hedge firms to lose money.
According to people familiar with the firm’s plans, GameStop Corp. is forming a division to create a marketplace for nonfungible tokens and form cryptocurrency partnerships, pushing the corporation into hotly debated areas as it works to resurrect its core videogame business.
The shop has hired more than 20 people to oversee the operation, which is developing an online marketplace for buying, selling, and exchanging NFTs of virtual videogame products including avatar clothing and weaponry.
According to the sources, the company is requesting a small number of game developers and publishers to put NFTs on its marketplace when it launches later this year.
The company, which is undergoing a turnaround to focus on digital sales rather than physical stores, is also in talks with crypto and blockchain companies about which tokens could be used on the NFT marketplace, according to the person, who asked not to be identified because the information isn’t yet public.
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