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The metaverse has attracted many traditional companies that are now offering a new way for their users to experience the virtual world. Starbucks is the latest popular brand to enter the metaverse.
The CEO of Starbucks, Howard Schultz, has issued a statement confirming that the company would venture into the metaverse. The billionaire announced in an Open Forum on April 4 that it would join the metaverse before the end of the year.
Starbucks joins the metaverse
Following the CEO’s announcement, Starbucks has issued a statement confirming that this integration would come as promised. No exact date has been given when Starbucks will move into the metaverse. In his announcement, Schultz said that it would be “before the end of this calendar year.
For those of you praying that I was kidding, here's the video proof.
In an address today aimed at unionizing workers, multi-billionaire Howard Schultz revealed that Starbucks is going to get into the NFT business "sometime before the end of this calendar year" pic.twitter.com/Jb2rGjgHj4
— Jordan Zakarin (@jordanzakarin) April 5, 2022
Schulz commenced his speech by asking the audience how many people had heard about non-fungible tokens (NFTs) or invested in these digital assets. None of the audience members admitted to having any knowledge about NFTs. The executive also said that the NFT ecosystem was still young and that Starbucks was equipped with the rights tools and collections to succeed in this space.
“If you look at the companies, the brands, the celebrities, the influencers that are trying to create a digital NFT platform and business, I can’t find one of them that has the treasure trove of assets that Starbucks has, from collectibles to the entire heritage of the company,” he said.
The appointment of Schulz as the CEO of Starbucks could see the company take a turn towards being crypto-friendly. Some of the largest giants in the sector have shifted towards crypto-friendly frameworks.
One of the notable things in the sector is that some companies have been sponsoring NFT drops. NFT drops are digital assets created by these companies and then issued to users to boost interactions with the companies.
The metaverse has also been used to create virtual worlds where digital-savvy customers can go for virtual experiences. One of the largest financial institutions on Wall Street, JPMorgan, announced that it would open its Onyx Lounge on the Decentraland metaverse. Some have also collaborated with crypto projects for NFT drops and have advertised their crypto-related initiatives.
Starbucks venture into NFTs
Schultz has talked about NFT integration’s benefits to the Starbucks brand. The executive said that Starbucks was not simply a beverage brand, but it was a company that had many years of tradition, history, and many collectibles situated around the world. The executive said that Starbucks NFTs would be more competitive than those already in the market.
Being the major brand it is, if Starbucks decides to launch NFTs, it could trigger a lot of interest. It would attract the same attention that other global giants such as Coca-Cola and Pepsi would receive if they were to announce NFT drops for their customers. These brands have physical collectibles such as bottles and cans that could be minted into NFTs. Moreover, they could also mint their favourite beverages into NFTs.
Starbucks could benefit greatly from adopting NFTs. OpenSea, the largest NFT marketplace that was launched barely five years ago, currently has a valuation of $13.3 billion. The valuation of Starbucks currently stands at $96.7 billion, showing that it has the potential to grow because of the integration of NFTs.
While the NFT sector has seen significant growth already and attracted a large user base, there is still potential for further growth. Citi has argued that the NFT and metaverse spaces will have a $13 trillion market cap in the coming years.