ASICS & STEPN Partner For Phygital NFT Shoe


ASICS, a Japanese sportswear company, has announced a partnership with move-to-earn app STEPN and the launch of a Solana-inspired shoe. Customers who purchase a GT-2000 11 IRL shoe will receive various rewards, including token-gated experiences. STEPN will also include those customers in an airdrop for a special ASICS x STEPN NFT sneaker.

The GT-2000 11 shoes will be available for a limited five-day period between November 4th and 8th. They come in two designs — light and dark mode — and contain highlights of the Solana brand’s colors. According to a press release, they represent the symbiotic relationship we should strive to have with technology, one that includes regular physical activity.

Users can purchase a pair using Solana Pay for $200 USDC, a stablecoin pegged to the U.S. dollar. The sneakers are currently borderless, meaning anybody anywhere in the world can purchase one, and there is no limit to how many pairs an individual can buy. ASICS is touting the limited-run process, saying it will produce greater efficiencies in the shoe’s production.

Joe Pace, Director of Web3 at ASICS, said the company is excited to continue delivering experiences for the Web3 community. This partnership with STEPN will allow ASICS to scale its mission to inspiring healthy habits for Web3 enthusiasts.

ASICS, short for Anima Sana In Corpore Sano (“a sound mind in a sound body” in Latin), has released NFT collections before. In 2021, it launched an NFT collection of digital shoes. In 2022, it partnered with STEPN to release an NFT collection of special sneakers that users could employ in the move-to-earn app.

Sneakers x NFTs a Big Match in Web3

There’s nothing quite like hip sneakers that says “cool” and “edgy,” and Web3 creators have taken notice. Throughout 2022, many companies have combined Web3 tech with IRL sneakers or created NFT collections surrounding cool shoes. Here are three such stories.

First, there is PUMA. Two months ago, the German sports apparel company launched a metaverse experience for New York Fashion Week. In it, holders of PUMA NFTs could redeem those non-fungible tokens for an IRL pair of sneakers.

Second, there is Jay Z’s Brooklyn Zoo sneakers. Five months ago, a prototype of those rare sneakers went up for auction as an NFT. The use of NFTs as an auctioning tool is not necessarily rare but attaching them to sneakers is.

Third and finally, there is RTFKT’s Nike Dunks NFTs. Six months ago, the NFT company unveiled its new cryptokicks, which were the first NFT wearables released since Nike bought RTFKT in late 2021.

ASICS new partnership with STEPN and release of its IRL Solana-inspired sneakers is big news for the Web3 space. And it shows some companies are still innovating despite the difficult bear market.