Is Walmart preparing to enter the metaverse?

Time:2022-01-16 Source: 987 views NFT Copy share

The retail giant has filed a total of seven patent applications, indicating plans to create its own line of digital currencies and NFTs.

Retail giant Walmart Inc. appears to be gearing up to enter the metaverse, with patent filings indicating that it plans to create its own line of cryptocurrencies and NFTs.

The multinational retailer filed several new trademarks with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Dec. 30, which, however, went unnoticed until Jan. 16, when CNBC's A report further sheds light on Walmart's ambitions.

Walmart filed a total of seven patent applications at the time, three of which belonged to its existing advertising division, Walmart Connect.

The apps include programs to create and sell "virtual goods" including electronics, toys, appliances, clothing and home decor. "Digital currencies" and "digital tokens" were also mentioned, as well as opportunities to buy and sell NFTs.

Meanwhile, a separate application indicates plans to trademark Walmart's brand name and logo in virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR), and potentially introduce "physical training services" in VR and AR.

It's the latest in a string of recent events that indicate Walmart's interest in the metaverse. In August, the retail giant listed a vacancy for a “head of digital currency and crypto products” to drive its digital currency strategy.

The job listing has since been removed, but it is unclear if anyone has held the position. A LinkedIn search for Walmart employees with the job turned up nothing.

Back in October, Walmart also partnered with cryptocurrency ATM company Coinstar and cryptocurrency exchange Coinme to install 200 Bitcoin ATMs in stores across the United States.

In addition, Walmart started using blockchain technology for supply chain management, customer marketplaces, and smart appliances starting in 2018.

The Metaverse could be an $8 trillion opportunity for retailers, according to analysts at Morgan Stanley.

In the third quarter of 2021, Walmart's sales reached $11.1 billion, according to Digital Commerce 360. Walmart is the largest private employer in the United States, with a market value of more than $406 billion. It operates a chain of supermarkets, discount stores and grocery stores. (Cointelegraph)

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