Fastex just opened an ftNFT store in the Dubai Mall — the largest shopping mall in the world. The move comes on the heels of the launch of the growing Web3 ecosystem’s first NFT store on March 16th at the Mall of Emirates, another one of Dubai’s popular malls.
The new ftNFT store will sell both physical and digital consumer products and experiences, a phenomenon that’s being dubbed “phygital.” Its recent Grand Opening event brought together NFT enthusiasts, artists and art collectors, and shoppers with no previous experience in Web3 to peruse the physical store.
Visitors can take guided tours across a vast library of NFTs available in the ftNFT marketplace. There are also in-store activities like a 3D-scanner supported “avatar booth” and a DJ cabin that let shoppers interact with the digital world. Furthermore, customers can create their own NFTs using the 3D scanner and add them to the ftNFT marketplace easily.
Many visitors purchased their first NFTs at the store’s Grand Opening. Fans praised the easy payment options (credit and debit card are accepted) and the novel experience of purchasing digital products in a real-life store.
Partners Farah Merhy and Fadi Arab participated in the launch, creating several physical products with NFT counterparts. One item was a luxury Arabic-style designed watch that’s available to whoever purchases the NFT associated with it. The watch is based on the story of King Solomon’s ring, who was said to control heaven and earth. According to Arab, the piece honors Arabic culture and connects “history with the future.”
ftNFT has plans to work with other artists, businesses, influencers, and producers to bring new art to the phygital store. Its next partner is the Armenian artist based in New York City, Tigran Tsitoghdzyan, who has already sold two paintings worth $60,000 through ftNFT.
Dubai Continues to Be a Presence in Web3
A phygital store that supports NFTs in the biggest shopping mall in the world is big news for Web3 fans. But the fact the store opened in Dubai should come as no surprise to folks paying attention to Web3. At Rarity Sniper, we’ve covered several stories involving Dubai in the next iteration of the internet. Here are some of the headlines.
First, on January, the Dubai Verse Cup (DVCC) teamed up with the Dubai Racing Club (DRC) to launch a new horse-racing experience in the metaverse. The Dubai Verse Cup is a play-to-earn horse racing platform that allows users to race and breed NFT horses in the metaverse and win crypto in the process.
Next, from February 8th to 10th, Dubai hosted The TMRW Dubai 2023 conference in partnership with the public relations firm GuerillaBuzz. The event brought in expert from around the world to discuss the metaverse, crypto, NFTs, DeFi, and more Web3 topics.
Finally, five months ago, the Crown Prince of Dubai approved the latest phase of the “Dubai Metaverse Strategy.” The goal of the strategy is to transform Dubai into one of the top Web3 and metaverse economies in the world.
We’ll have to be patient to see if the ftNFT store in the Dubai Mall is successful. But if it is, we expect more phygital stores to pop up in Dubai and around the world in the months and years to come.