Walmart, the US retail giant and the world's largest company by revenue, appears to be positioning itself for a venture into the world of crypto and non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Based on trademark documents the retail giant filed in December 2021 with the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), the company is also laying the groundwork to create its own cryptocurrency to contend with the likes of Bitcoin and Ether. This isn't the first time we've heard rumblings from Walmart related to the crypto market, but if things do turn out the way it seems, we could see crypto adoption in the retail segment shoot through the roof.
According to CNBC, Walmart filed seven trademarks in late December 2021 that appear to indicate the retailer's intent to both make and sell virtual goods while a separate filing indicated that the company would be offering users virtual currency and NFTs. The documentation states, among other things, that Walmart may launch “financial services, namely, providing a digital currency and a digital token of value for use by members of an online community via a global computer network.”
Walmart, as expected, hasn't provided any details about its plans, instead telling CNBC in a generic statement that it is “continuously exploring how emerging technologies” may impact its business. The company went on to say that it tests “new ideas all the time,” and that some of them may become actual products and/or services.
Meanwhile, another application also details possibilities for "physical fitness training services" as well as classes in the field of health and nutrition. According to a report by The Verge, these applications could take place via augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) environments.
The company also made another filing for the use of its name and logo in both AR and VR. A separate article by Bloomberg pointed out that the company had also filed trademarks for certain names like "Verse to Curb," "Verse to Home," and "Verse to Store" — all hinting that the company could be preparing a virtual shopping experience for its customers.
Walmart's trademark application also shows that they might make software's in the future. These software suites can be used in e-commerce marketplaces in mobile/game devices and can also be used for fund transfers, blockchain, crypto, and other similar uses.
In the near future, whatever virtual world Walmart plans to open its store in will push the price of its token while being a big push for all stakeholders in the metaverse space. The release of its cryptocurrency means Walmart might even start accepting Bitcoin across all its stores in the US.
Interested in cryptocurrency? We discuss all things crypto with WazirX CEO Nischal Shetty and WeekendInvesting founder Alok Jain on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts. Affiliate links may be automatically generated - see our ethics statement for details.