Highstreet Announces $5 Million Raise to Combine VR, NFT, and Crypto

Highstreet will recreate the shopping experience from scratch with VR and NFTs guiding users to shop together in the Metaverse.

Cover image from Shutterstock
Cover image from Shutterstock

Key Takeaways

  • Highstreet is a next-generation digital marketplace where users can shop in group in virtual reality.
  • The project has completed a $5 million raise from crypto and traditional VCs alike.
  • Highstreet is reimagining the retail experience allowing groups of users to shop NFTs together tied to real-world products.

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The VR Metaverse is inching closer. With some calling for “NFT Summer,” Highstreet, a metaverse-based DeFi marketplace for NFTs and other digital items, has raised $5 million.

Highstreet: NFT Marketplace in Virtual Reality

Highstreet aims to bring the digital marketplace to virtual reality. The Canadian startup has raised $5 million from crypto and traditional VCs such as Panony, Mechanism Capital, NGC Ventures, and Jump Trading. The round also included influencers and community members such as Miss Bitcoin, Encrypt Club, and Mr. Block.

Andrew Kang, Managing Partner at Mechanism Capital, said of the raise:

“Retail consumers have shown increasing attention and familiarity with digitally native goods, but most brands haven’t been able to tap into this interest. Highstreet offers the potential for traditional retail brands to generate interest and loyalty among their customer base in a completely new fashion through NFTs.”

This funding will allow Highstreet to expand its engineering department, focusing on developers with Unity experience. The goal is to create a seamless metaverse experience where users can shop together and experience what they call “the future of retail.”

The world of Highstreet will be composed of different explorable islands powered by brands or partners, complete with residential zones and shopping areas where users can buy NFTs. These NFTs might be digital artwork, but they can also entail customers to real-world items. To promote their latest album, Kings of Leon offered NFTs that entailed customers to the real vinyl pressings. Discussing the future of virtual reality shopping, Highstreet CEO Travis Wu said:

“Highstreet is excited to have such a diverse group of investors join us on our journey to build the future of retail. Many believed e-commerce was the beginning of the end for extravagant brand activations and charming storefronts. However, the excitement of shopping lives on in the metaverse. In a virtual world, brand expression is limitless, bound not by building costs nor physics. The ultimate retail experience will debut soon, right here on Highstreet.”

Disclaimer: The author held ETH and several other cryptocurrencies at the time of writing.

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