The Defiant

Walmart Introduces Pudgy Toys In 2,000 Stores

Floor Price Of Popular NFT Project Rises 11% After Deal With World’s Largest Retailer

By: Owen Fernau

Walmart Introduces Pudgy Toys In 2,000 Stores

In a distinct move away from the digital domain of crypto, Pudgy Penguins, one of the few NFT projects to thrive in the bear market, is launching 26 different toys in 2,000 Walmart stores.

The floor price of the collection surged over 11% to 5.2 ETH on the news that the world’s largest retailer, with $600B in 2022 revenue, would be carrying the toys.

Pudgy Penguins Floor Price
Pudgy Penguins Floor Price

Daily volume spiked over 270% to 849 ETH ($1.3M), second only to Bored Ape Yacht Club in that time frame, according to CoinGecko.

Walmart’s move to promote a crypto-native project comes as a much-needed boost for the NFT space, which has been suffering from a major hangover after an equally eyewatering bull market.

Pudgy Penguins’ business development efforts may provide a blueprint for other projects moving forward — the signup for Pudgy World involves creating a crypto wallet and also enables NFT trading. These key actions have typically been pain points in onboarding new users to Web3.

Each Pudgy Toy comes with a ‘birth certificate,’ enabling the owner to unlock and trade unique attributes for their 'Forever Pudgy' avatar in Pudgy World, the project’s virtual world.

Pudgy Toys
Pudgy Toys

The news also comes as mainstream media outlets have written off NFTs — Rolling Stone, which at one point featured the image of a Bored Ape on its cover, pronounced NFTs “worthless” last week.

To be sure, just because the toys are on the shelves doesn’t mean that they’re going to sell — Pudgy Penguins doesn’t have a feature film, video game, or other accompanying media to drive sales like many popular toys do.

Remarkable Turnaround

Entrepreneur Luca Netz took over as CEO of Pudgy Penguins in April 2022 when he bought the company behind the NFTs for 750 ETH, worth around $2.2M at the time. The project had been embroiled in controversy before the acquisition.

The NFT project launched its toys in May 2023 after teasing them nearly a year earlier. Leading up to the deal with Walmart, the project sold its toys directly through Amazon, with $500,000 of sales in the first two days, according to Netz.

The online sales showed Walmart that their toys would sell, Netz said on a recent Space. The founder remains enthusiastic about the value a broader community of holders can bring to Pudgy Penguins.

“Leveraging the hive mind that is the group, that is the community, that’s what it means to be a Web3 company,” Netz said.