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GameStop Set to Add NFT Marketplace: Shares Surge

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Rumors of video game retailer GameStop Corp GME+1.26% entering the non-fungible token space started in back in April 2021 with job postings seeking someone with experience in NFTs, cryptocurrency and blockchain technologies. A new report shows an NFT marketplace from the company could be imminent.

What Happened: GameStop is launching a division to develop an NFT marketplace and launch cryptocurrency partnerships, according to a Wall Street Journal report.

Over 20 people have been hired to run the unit, which will serve as a marketplace to buy, sell and trade NFTs of virtual video game goods that could include avatar outfits and weapons.

“The company is asking select game developers and publishers to list NFTs on its marketplace when it launches later this year,” WSJ reports.

GameStop is also nearing two partnerships in the cryptocurrency space, according to the report. The company would co-invest in the development of games that use blockchain and NFT technology and also share technology.

“We believe our emphasis on the long term is positioned us to build what will ultimately become a much larger business,” GameStop CEO Matt Furlong said on the company’s recent earnings call. Furlong mentioned GameStop was exploring business opportunities in the NFT space.

Why It’s Important: NFT marketplace OpenSea is valued at $13.3 billion in a recent $300 million funding round this week. Fellow meme stock darling AMC Entertainment Holdings AMC-1.32%+ Free Alertsentered the NFT space in 2021 with Spider-Man themed NFTs to coincide with “Spider-Man: No Way Home.”

The video game sector is seen as one of many that will grow in the NFT space with Ubisoft Entertainment UBSFY+0.65%+ Free Alerts one of the largest video game companies launching in-game NFTs. Gamers have been known to spend money on digital avatars and in-game purchases like virtual goods.

GameStop has been rumored to be working on NFT offerings for many months including being linked to the Loopring LRC cryptocurrency and a potential to use the Ethereum ETH ERC-721 standard.

GameStop supposedly launched an NFT website last year that lists “request to be a creator.” The website lists “power to the players, power to the creators, power to the collectors.”

Jim Cramer tweeted in support of the plan by GameStop to enter the cryptocurrency space, a suggestion he had in 2021.

$GME using my crypto suggestion! I want a royalty or a banking fee.. Or at least a shout out! You guys rock!!!

— Jim Cramer (@jimcramer) January 6, 2022

Price Acton: GME shares are up 28.6% to $168.50 in after-hours trading. Loopring is up 9% to $2.00.

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