Want NFT Fries With That? McDonald’s Preps Metaverse Play


Key Takeaways

  • McDonald’s appears to be preparing for a move into the Metaverse. It’s filed a series of patents related to virtual goods.
  • The fast food chain has recently adopted NFTs and shown interest in the crypto space.
  • Many other major companies and brands have entered the NFT and Metaverse spaces in recent months.

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McDonald’s could be the next major company to enter the Metaverse.

McDonald’s Files Virtual Goods Patents

It looks like McDonald’s could be preparing to make a big Metaverse play.

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Recent trademark applications from the fast food chain suggest that the company has its sights set on NFTs and virtual worlds. The firm filed the applications with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Feb. 4, as highlighted in a Wednesday tweet by trademark attorney Josh Gerben.

According to the filings, McDonald’s has applied for trademarks for its own virtual food and beverages, as well as “downloadable multimedia files containing artwork, text, audio and video files and non-fungible tokens.” Additionally, it’s applied to have its own intellectual property covering “entertainment services,” specifically real-world and virtual concerts and events. One of the filings is for “operating a virtual restaurant featuring actual and virtual goods, operating a virtual restaurant online featuring home delivery.”

While the trademark applications are a big indicator of the restaurant chain’s interest in the Metaverse, the company has been engaged in the crypto space for several months now. Last week, it planned an NFT exhibit honoring the Lunar New Year, and in October it unveiled an NFT marking the 40th anniversary of the McRib burger.

The restaurant’s social media team has also become increasingly engaged in crypto discussions on Twitter in recent weeks. “how are you doing people who run crypto twitter accounts,” the company’s official account tweeted on Jan. 24, hours after the market suffered a steep decline.

McDonald’s isn’t the first major company to show clear interest in the Metaverse. Other multinational firms like Adidas, Nike, Coca-Cola, and Visa have embraced NFTs and the Metaverse to varying degrees in recent months, with Adidas adopting its own Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT as part of a marketing push called “Into the Metaverse.” But the biggest move of all has come from Facebook, now known as Meta. Announcing the company’s rebrand in October 2021, Mark Zuckerberg said that the firm would be pivoting “to bring the Metaverse to life.” As NFTs and the Metaverse continue to draw interest, it’s likely that more big companies will be looking to follow Zuckerberg and Ronald McDonald’s lead.

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