The Liverpool F.C. merchandise is currently available in Meta Avatar stores on Facebook, Messenger, Instagram. It will be available in virtual reality later this year. The recent offering of football club virtual merchandise as avatars is expected to attract sports fans around the globe to Meta’s family of apps and boost user growth. The merchandise is available in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Thailand, Spain, Italy and the U.K.
Meta is planning to build the metaverse as an independent e-commerce platform. To do so, it is investing heavily in building its virtual reality space to give customers an immersive experience in terms of various aspects like social networking and gaming.
Meta previously collaborated with StatusPro to launch NFL PRO ERA on Meta Quest 2. Gamers can put on their virtual cleats and experience what it feels like to be part of a real game.
Meta’s recent announcement comes right after the company launched its first high-end virtual reality (VR) headset, Meta Quest Pro. The VR headset will begin shipping on Oct 25, priced at $1,499.99.
With its recent launch of a new VR headset and collaboration with big organizations, Meta is on track to build the metaverse on which the company is banking its future. To build the metaverse, Meta has also partnered with PyTorch foundation co-founder Microsoft (MSFT – Free Report) .
Microsoft Chairman and CEO Satya Nadella joined Mark Zuckerberg at the Meta Connect event to announce the new partnership, bringing new work and productivity tools to Meta Quest Pro and Meta Quest 2 next year. These include apps like Microsoft Windows 365 and Microsoft Teams and the ability to join a Teams meeting from inside Meta Horizons Workrooms.
Meta Investing in VR to Generate Positive ROI
META is currently facing the worst downturn in its history with its declining digital advertisement revenues.
The recent revenue fall can be attributed to geopolitical tensions like the Russia-Ukraine war, which reduced META’s monthly active users across its family of apps, namely Facebook and Instagram. Also, rising inflation weakened digital advertising revenues.
Also impacting Meta’s ad revenue growth are ad targeting-related headwinds created by Apple’s iOS changes.
The stock, which currently has a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell), has tumbled 59.5% in the year-to-date period compared with the Zacks Internet – Software industry’s decline of 53.7%.
Meta’s financial plans to generate sufficient operating income from its Family of Apps business segment to fund the growth of its Reality Labs have taken a major hit. The company has been recently closing various long-term projects, which are burning a lot of cash.
In September, Meta announced that it discontinued its cryptocurrency wallet pilot project — Novi. This is a major setback for the company in developing the metaverse as an independent commercial platform as both the crypto and NFT markets crashed.
Snap is benefiting from improving user engagement, particularly in the 13-34-year-old demography, which is expanding its advertiser base. SNAP is also giving competition to META in the metaverse space. It collaborated with Vogue to feature a virtual try-on experience of select pieces from Balenciaga, Dior and Gucci, which will be available for snapchatters, globally.
Even as Meta is investing aggressively in building the metaverse, Twitter surpassed it as the first social media giant to enter the non-fungible token marketplace by launching a tool to showcase and sell NFTs on its platform.
Although Meta’s short-term revenue growth looks bleak, the company is confident about its long-term prospects. It will spend more than $3 billion in the next 10 years on VR. The company is investing heavily to develop a VR content ecosystem and expects this to generate positive ROI for the company in the long run.
Additionally, merchandise sales have been a huge revenue driver for big sporting clubs. The recent collaboration with Liverpool reflects Meta’s strategic partnership efforts to boost e-commerce positively during the pandemic period.