GameStop’s (GME) stock opened 20% higher on Friday after a news report that the video game retailer is launching a marketplace for non-fungible tokens (NFTs), a move which had been hinted at previously.
GameStop is also reportedly creating partnerships with two crypto companies to “share technology and co-invest in the development of games that use blockchain and NFT technology, as well as other NFT-related projects,” according to people familiar with the plans who spoke to the Wall Street Journal.
CEO Matt Furlong gave a teaser about plans involving non-fungible tokens and crypto during the company’s last earnings call.
“We’ve also been exploring emerging opportunities in blockchain, NFTs and Web 3.0 gaming,” Furlong said during the call in December of 2021,
Several months ago, Internet sleuths had noticed company job descriptions which included “NFT” and “Web 3.0.”
The video-game retailer also has a link on the GameStop URL soliciting creators for an NFT marketplace. “Request to be a creator on the Gamestop NFT marketplace,” says the website.
Yahoo Finance reached out to the video game retailer for a comment and is waiting to hear back.
GameStop has been a ‘meme’ stock favorite among retailer investors over the last year. The highly speculative stock was the third most searched ticker in all of 2021, behind Tesla (TSLA), and AMC (AMC). Shares of AMC opened about 5% higher on Friday morning.
Short interest in GME and AMC is 13.7% and 18.8% of the float, respectively.
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GameStop is undergoing a turnaround plan under Chairman Ryan Cohen, the co-founder of e-commerce platform Chewy (CHWY).
Cohen, known as “Papa Cohen” by the retail trader crowd, has been hush-hush about his strategy.
“We are trying to do something that nobody in the retail space has ever done,” Cohen said at the company’s annual meeting in June of last year.
GameStop went through a C-Suite overhaul over the summer, with Amazon (AMZN) veterans Matt Furlong appointed as CEO and Mike Recupero as CFO.
In December, the company announced it had established new offices in Seattle and Boston, describing the locations as “technology hubs with established talent markets.”
Recently, GameStop and other meme favorites have been under pressure along with risk assets and growth names, over concerns of Fed rate hikes this year.
Ines is a markets reporter covering stocks from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Follow her on Twitter at @ines_ferre