Aglet, the developer of a sneaker and culture focused, spatial commerce experience, announced today it has completed a Seed financing of an additional $4.5 million just months after closing its pre-seed extension. Aglet has now raised $7 million since its founding late 2019. The round was led by Sapphire Sport with participation from existing investors Lakestar Ventures and Forecast Ventures. Notable angels Matt Miesnieks (6D.ai, Niantic Labs), Nate Mitchell (co-founder Oculus, Mountaintop Studios) and Greg Castle (Anorak Ventures) also participated in the round.
“Our main thesis is that gaming is eating the world,” co-founder and CEO Ryan Mullins said. “We seek to be the ‘metaverse for commerce’ where online and offline consumption experiences fuse together into something magical, fun and new. Aglet has built the platform for existing brands to plug into our experience, as well as for the next generation of creators to design virtual streetwear and brands. Our vision is to give them their own virtual retail shop in the gaming world and bring their designs into reality. ‘The street’ is now a virtual street.”
Sneakerheads rarely land their desired products in real life, owing to the influx of malicious shopping bots and the overall increased global demand for what ultimately is limited product. Aglet has created a gamified alternative that offers these passionate consumers a chance to earn in-game currency, compete against other players around the world and collect virtual sneakers in a game environment, all while getting exercise and interacting with the physical world. Among its 100,000 current players, the Aglet community has already accumulated 8.4 billion steps for a grand total of 7m kilometers walked! Their activity has earned a lot of virtual ‘Aglet’ with nearly 200,000 sneakers sold.
“We are thrilled to be partnering with Ryan and Owen and the team they are assembling at Aglet,” said Michael Spirito, co-founder and Managing Director of Sapphire Sport. “Aglet is creating product at the intersection of gaming, fashion, software and media, and in so doing is changing how people interact with brands in both the virtual and physical worlds. This is where consumption is increasingly moving, and most importantly where culture is being created and monetized, and Aglet’s is a vision we are excited to back and help build.”
Aglet has assembled a team of industry veterans from Riot Games, Jordan Brand, and adidas, among others. Since launch, collaborations with innovative companies like Stadium Goods and Gucci have been announced which connect virtual and physical product. During its November Creator Month, Aglet partnered with Newark-based sneaker academy, Dirty Soles, and also received thousands of original design submissions from the passionate Aglet community, many of which sold out instantly in the Aglet Shop.
Aglet is currently hiring game design talent to evolve and expand the game experience.
Founded in 2019, Aglet is a publisher and developer of sneaker-focused, location-based spatial commerce experiences for Gen-Z. Co-founded by Ryan David Mullins (adidas, oolipo) and Owen Batt (Loc8). Aglet was created to reimagine the commerce experience by fusing virtual and physical worlds and location-based gameplay.
ABOUT SAPPHIRE SPORT
Sapphire Sport is a first-of-its-kind venture capital platform bringing together the capital and industry experience of premier global sporting, media and lifestyle brands, including City Football Group, AEG, Sinclair, MLB, adidas, principal owners and investors from franchises in all five major U.S. sports leagues as well as strategic family offices and institutional investors.