Avatar developer Genies is releasing NFT clothing for its avatars. Known for its partnerships with celebrities like Justin Bieber, Rihanna and Cardi B, it is launching an NFT fashion marketplace called ‘The Warehouse’. Only creators approved by Genies will be able to release NFT clothing on The Warehouse, but the platform ultimately aims to allow all users to do so.
Creators own the original intellectual property of their NFTs and receive a cut of revenue every time a piece is resold, with Genies taking 5% off each transaction, according to Techcrunch. Users who buy a digital fashion item can edit it to their liking using platform tools.
Notably, Genies did not start as a Web3 company but initially developed avatars for messaging platforms, aiming to dethrone Bitmoji. It has since moved towards developing virtual celebrity personas through partnerships with leagues like the NFL and MLB. The company also signed deals with Universal and Warner Music to create avatars for the labels’ artists.
Now, the company is a tech unicorn, having sourced funding from heavyweights like Dapper Labs, Silver Lake and Bond Capital and includes former Disney CEO Bob Iger as both an investor and board member.
It uses the Flow blockchain developed by Dapper Labs.
While Genies is currently ahead of its competitors due to its high-profile celebrity partnerships, avatar NFT fashion is becoming crowded, making it difficult for companies to stand out. Web3 fashion house, The Fabricant, has distinguished itself through luxury brand partnerships and many other brands including Adidas, Prada and Gucci are using NFTs. Nike’s Dunk Genesis Cryptokicks even includes the use of augmented reality in its fashion NFTs.
Arguably, a key challenge for NFT fashion in the future is making sure that collections can function on avatars across different metaverses.