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Retail giant Amazon plans new NFT initiatives: report

After years of speculation, retail giant Amazon is reportedly working toward non-fungible tokens (NFTs) in 2023. According to insiders familiar with the matter, Amazon’s foray into NFTs could be expected sometime in the spring as the firm makes a frantic effort for a slice of the pie.

Sources say Amazon has been in talks with several blockchain companies to partner for the NFT offering. The potential partners for Amazon’s NFTs range from blockchain-based gaming platforms, digital currency exchanges, and layer 1 blockchains.

It appears that gaming platforms might get the nudge over others, as Amazon’s NFT is said to lean heavily toward gamification. Users of the retail giants might be allowed to play blockchain-based games on the platform for the chance to win rare digital collectibles.

The NFT offering has been touted to run on the actual Amazon site rather than AWS, with insiders suggesting that a Web3 hiring spree is on the horizon.

“We knew it was possible,” one insider told Blockworks. “But now it seems like it’s really happening. That’s going to affect the existing players in the space — if they execute and do this right and are smart about it.”

Amazon’s sheer size of 98 million monthly users will make it a major player in the NFT space as current market leaders OpenSea and Rarible continue to jostle for market share. However, the retail giant’s interest in NFTs is coming at a time when transaction volumes and floor prices are at an all-time low from the raging highs of 2022.

“With the [number] of customers Amazon has, they could make a huge splash in the NFT marketplace,” another source told the outlet.

Long time in the works

Amazon has been dropping hints about its NFT interest since early 2022, with CEO Andy Jassy stating that he could see the company selling digital collectibles “down the road.”

He added that he “expects that NFTs will continue to grow very significantly” and that there is a high chance that the company could integrate virtual currency payment options for users.

Interest in Web3 and virtual currencies became glaring after Amazon posted a job listing that it was searching for a blockchain product lead back. Another speculation swirling around the company was the claim that the company was close to accepting Bitcoin as a payment mechanism which Amazon denied.

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