Hip-Hop Collab Teams PUMA, Roc Nation and Legitimate for Sneaker Release

The three models of sneakers celebrate the 50th anniversary of hip-hop and each one has an NFC chip owners can scan to access exclusive music content.

AccessTimeIconJul 14, 2023 at 1:00 p.m. UTC
Updated Jul 18, 2023 at 7:49 p.m. UTC

Non-fungible token (NFT) company Legitimate is teaming up with shoe behemoth PUMA and entertainment agency Roc Nation to release a sneaker collection.

Called “Evolution of the Mixtape,” the collection pays homage to the 50th anniversary of hip-hop and allows buyers to access exclusive music content curated by Roc Nation.

The three sneaker models, called “Cassette Tape,” “Playlist” and “Disc” are embedded with an “LGT Tag,” Legitimate’s near-field communication (NFC) chip in the tongue of the shoe. Owners can scan the NFC chip to access to a digital portal which will feature weekly mixtapes, behind-the-scenes artist content and unreleased tracks from Roc Nation artists.

Calvin Chan, founder and CEO of Legitimate told CoinDesk that partnering with PUMA and Roc Nation not only tells the stories of a cultural movement, but helps expand fans’ access to their favorite artists’ music.

“The vision here was to pay homage to and innovate on the concept of a mixtape bringing talent and people together, but also exploring how mixtape and hip hop culture has evolved and grown over time, especially with the inclusion of tech,” said Chan. “PUMA, Roc Nation and Legitimate are working together to innovate on this concept of the mixtape itself by seamlessly connecting the dots between fashion, music and technology.”

Additionally, he added that utilizing an NFC chip and rewarding buyers for their purchase with new music not only helps keep them engaged, but builds brand loyalty.

“‘Phygital’ products allow brands to engage with their customers on a physical and digital level,” said Chan. “This capability and visibility is very important for brands, and ultimately, extremely valuable for consumers as they derive more value from their purchases and brand loyalty.”

While digitally-native fashion has helped define a vision for the metaverse, physically-linked items can help facilitate the jump from Web2 to Web3. Last week, men’s luxury brand Dior released NFC-chip embedded sneakers that utilize the blockchain to prove ownership. In March, Web3 streetwear brand Cult and Rain released its second digital wearable collection featuring physical hoodies with NFC chips for garment provenance.

Edited by Toby Leah Bochan.


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Cam Thompson

Cam Thompson was a news reporter at CoinDesk.

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