Funko Enters the NFT Collectible Space with TokenWave Acquisition

Source: Funko/The Toy Book

It’s April Fools’ day, but this is no joke: Funko is betting big on the growing world of the non-fungible token (NFT) with the acquisition of a majority stake in TokenWave, the company behind TokenHead, a mobile app and website for showcasing and tracking NFT holdings. The news comes three weeks after Funko CEO Brian Mariotti explained to Yahoo! Finance that the Washington-based maker of collectibles, toys, and lifestyle products had a “plan in place” to completely “disrupt this space in a way that no one else is doing right now.”

In recent weeks, NFTs have moved beyond being a buzzworthy acronym and into the realm of serious toys and collectibles. For those unfamiliar, an NFT is a unique digital asset that’s held in a digital ledger on the blockchain. Last year, The Topps Co. held an NFT Day as part of its DigiCon 2020, and this week, Legendary Pictures is getting in on the action with NFTs inspired by Godzilla Vs. Kong.

Related: State of the Industry Q&A 2021: Funko

“Funko is thrilled to advance another platform that our fans and collectors will love and find valuable,” says Mariotti. “Our strategy in this space is clear — bring the value-added NFT opportunity to our licensing partners to leverage our broad range of existing pop culture content across TV, movies, sports, music, anime, video games, and comic books. Our amazing licensing partners are excited about our entry into this new digital space and we believe the diversity of our licensing portfolio sets us up for long-term success.”

Beginning in June, Funko will launch NFT offerings on the WAX platform, the leading decentralized wallet on the blockchain, which provides verifiable authenticity for purchases of Funko NFTs. Mariotti says that the NFTs will start at an affordable price point of just $9.99.

“The marriage of digital and physical using WAX’s patented NFT technology known as vIRLs is powerful,” he says. “Our ability to combine Funko Pop! digital NFTs with exclusive Funko Pop! Vinyl Figures has the potential to be a game-changer.”

For a detailed explanation of NFTs and how they work, check out the following sketch from Saturday Night Live (SNL). Oddly enough, a comedy sketch starring Pete Davidson is perhaps the most comprehensive and easy-to-understand guide for the bold new world of NFTs.

About the author

James Zahn

James Zahn

James Zahn, AKA The Rock Father, is Editor-in-Chief of The Toy Book, a Senior Editor at The Toy Insider and The Pop Insider, and Editor of The Toy Report, The Toy Book‘s weekly industry newsletter. As a pop culture and toy industry expert, Zahn has appeared as a panelist and guest at events including Comic-Con International: San Diego (SDCC) Wizard World Chicago, and the ASTRA Marketplace & Academy. Zahn has more than 30 years of experience in the entertainment, retail, and publishing industries, and is frequently called upon to offer expert commentary for publications such as Forbes, Marketwatch, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, USA Today, Reuters, the Washington Post, and more. James has appeared on History Channel’s Modern Marvels, was interviewed by Larry King and Anderson Cooper, and has been seen on Yahoo! Finance, CNN, CNBC, FOX Business, NBC, ABC, CBS, WGN, The CW, and more. Zahn joined the Adventure Media & Events family in 2016, initially serving as a member of the Parent Advisory Board after penning articles for the Netflix Stream Team, Fandango Family, PBS KIDS, Sprout Parents (now Universal Kids), PopSugar, and Chicago Parent. He eventually joined the company full time as a Senior Editor and moved up the ranks to Deputy Editor and Editor-in-Chief.