GameStop is doubling down on crypto, and as part of its growing expansion into blockchain technologies, it announced a new partnership with crypto exchange FTX on Wednesday.
The two companies haven’t spelled out too many details about what the partnership will actually mean, but they did share a few tidbits. According to a press release, “the partnership is intended to introduce more GameStop customers to FTX’s community and its marketplaces for digital assets.”
One concrete aspect of the partnership is that GameStop will start carrying FTX gift cards in “select stores.” GameStop is also FTX’s “preferred retail partner” in the US, which could suggest that FTX will sell other sorts of goods at GameStop at some point.
The partnership arrives on the heels of GameStop’s headfirst dive into crypto, which has so far included the launch of its own NFT marketplace and its own crypto wallet. The company also recently laid off staff, and in a memo to employees about the cuts, CEO Matt Furlong highlighted the company’s blockchain group in the very first sentence.
By partnering with FTX, GameStop seems to be signaling that it’s still serious about crypto — but the alliance could also help both companies as they attempt to navigate the so-called crypto winter. As prices of digital assets plunged earlier this year, FTX CEO and co-founder Sam Bankman-Fried have tried to bail out some struggling crypto companies like Voyager and BlockFi, though he said recently those investments have had “mixed” results.
GameStop isn’t the only company to recently partner with FTX; Reddit has also teamed up with the crypto exchange, while FTX has spent extensively on ads during the Super Bowl and sponsored various sports teams / leagues in attempts to raise its profile. Last year, FTX paid $135 million to rename the Miami Heat’s home American Airlines Arena to FTX Arena, well before Crypto.com signed a $700 million deal for naming rights on the LA Lakers’ home court, previously known as Staples Center.