AO Metaverse And Run It Wild Set New Standards For The Industry At Cannes Lions

In partnership with web3 studio Run it Wild, the Australian Open Metaverse (AO Metaverse) has won the first Cannes Lions for a NFT-metaverse project in the Entertainment category for Sports.

AO Metaverse and NFT collection AO Artball won a Bronze Lion for most ‘innovative use of tech and platforms in sport.’

AO was the first grand slam to virtualise its precinct in a leading Metaverse, Decentraland, taking visitors on an immersive journey through Melbourne park, including unprecedented access to behind-the-scenes footage, historic matches, and play-to-earn daily quests to win NFTs, POAPs & wearables.

Extending the tournament beyond the court, dedicated tennis fans were able to return to AO Metaverse daily, to watch match replays, get voyeuristic glimpses of press room interviews, training courts and watch historic replays for the entire 14 days of the tournament, for free, from anywhere in the world.

Along with ‘AO Artball’, the world-first NFT collection to link Hawk-Eye data to NFTs, AO Metaverse engaged and united tennis fans in a completely new way. Visitors were able to own a piece of the AO and get more value from immersing themselves in the tournament, than ever before, creating an entirely new category of invested sports fan.

Speaking with blockchain studio and metaverse specialists architecting the experience: ‘I’m incredibly proud of what the Run It Wild team has delivered – being recognised for a project that was anchored by blockchain technology, there’s something truly beautiful when creative, data and technology meet . Having the faith and support of the AO, it’s been a crazy ride pushing the limits of creative and technological possibilities, elevating those we work with,’ said Adam De Cata, Founder of Run it Wild.

“It’s a huge honour as a Web3 project to be recognised by the creative industry in the most prestigious creative awards. We wanted to push the boundaries of what was possible using the technology we had available to us. We believe our ability to link data, sport, and technology to drive a valuable consumer experience is true innovation, ” said Ridley Plummer, NFT & Metaverse Project Lead, Tennis Australia.

Evidenced by the number of brands and blockchain leaders that reference AO Metaverse as a leading case study, web3 studio Run it Wild continues to push the limits of creative and technological possibilities. “Testament to the dream team of the most imaginative, commercially creative, hard -working spartans on one of the most searingly smart, finely executed strategies around. It takes a village to raise metaverse records,” De Cata added.

Long after the creative awards season pass, always in the game, AO Metaverse continues to set new precedents. Just last week, NFT holders were invited to a crypto-can’t-buy private tennis clinic with Stan Smith. Former world number one tennis player, two-time major singles champion & from one of the most successful doubles pairings of all time.

“As a blockchain romantic, the future of utility is in the eyes of the beholder and we see the potential for web3 as limitless. We’re excited to bring our community of fervent tennis fans more imaginative experiences as metaverse development accelerates and the need for immersive IRL experiences with it. Building in real time, there have been plenty of learnings, AO23 and beyond looks pretty special. More to come.” De Cata teased.

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