Adidas is exploring the possibility of conducting token-gated sneaker drops and utilizing token-gated strategies for future releases. According to Erika Wykes-Sneyd, Adidas’ Web3 lead, the use of cryptocurrency and these tactics can help address the industry’s current “bot issue,” allowing crypto communities to gain access to exclusive drops for specific communities and currencies.

However, the company is uncertain if these strategies are effectively addressing any industry gaps. Adidas made its first foray into Web3 in December 2021, purchasing a Bored Ape NFT from BAYC and subsequently leading its “Into the Metaverse” drop, which garnered $23.4 million USD in a single afternoon. RTFKT recently revealed its prototype for Cryptokicks iRL, described as the “first native Web3 sneaker” that integrates the next evolution of smart sneaker technology. Similarly, Balmain announced that its $1,200 USD “Unicorn” sneaker is finally getting its digital counterpart to accompany the physical versions in an upcoming sale in March.