Hong Kong-headquartered RTFKT Studios, a digital fashion brand known for creating digital goods (Non-Fungible Tokens or NFTs), announced raising $8 million in a seed funding round anchored by Silicon Valley venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz.
The startup, founded in late 2019, creates NFTs such as collectible sneakers, game skins, and in-game limited physical collector editions and then auctions them off via blockchain.
Buyers of these NTFs can “wear” the sneakers on social media and subsequently redeem a physical, real-life pair of sneakers, according to RTFKT’s announcement.
NFTs are assets in the digital world that can be bought and sold like any other piece of property but have no tangible form of their own. In April, an NFT created by artist Beetle sold for over $60 million at Christie’s, making it the most expensive NFT ever sold at auction.
The RTFKT team has launched numerous partnerships with brands like FEWOCiOUS, a popular crypto artist whose collection sold in seven minutes for US$3 million, and some notable individual artists and celebrities including Paris Hilton, Jeff Staple, and Janet Jackson.
The startup said it will continue fostering innovation in the digital asset industry by offering a revenue share model to the artists and building collaborations on its platform.
The funding round, which was also backed by global investors C Ventures and Galaxy Fund, will help RTFKT expand its global team and incubate new digital community projects.
“Digitalization is expected to have a tremendous influence on fashion going forward, driven by the collaboration of gaming and crypto-native founders. Initial success has inspired numerous creators and designers to explore the future of digital fashion,” RTFKT said.
On its website, RTFKT said it was an undefined collective that worked strictly in the shadows for many years, providing designs and concepts to game companies and a few select fashion brands.
Last year, the company formed an entity to expand its services into the public meta market.