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Zoop Secures $15M+ in Backing and Formalizes Partnership with Ready Player Me Ahead of Global Platform Launch on Hedera

Published By
Alex Russman
October 27, 2022

(NEW YORK, NY) Oct 27th, 2022 Zoop, the digital celebrity collectibles trading platform created by RJ Phillips and Tim Stokely, alongside other key team members responsible for turning Onlyfans into a billion-dollar unicorn, today announces new support and two strategic partnerships in advance of its highly anticipated global launch. On the back of an oversubscribed seed round, Zoop has secured $15M in grants and investments. Additionally, Ready Player Me, the leading platform for cross-game avatars, is partnering with Zoop to provide interoperability between Zoop’s avatars and compatible games and apps and to support secure transactions and processing, Zoop is on enterprise-grade public ledger Hedera. Together, these partnerships will provide additional functionality and utility for one of the most closely watched launches in all of web3. 

“With over a decade of experience in community-building, it has always been clear to us that today’s most engaged, active communities are built online,” said RJ Phillips, co-CEO of Zoop. “The advent of web3 has only served to further those connections, and we can now use the digital world to bridge the physical and create real-life experiences. We are grateful for the support of our partners at the HBAR Foundation and Ready Player Me to help us realize our ultimate goal of fostering connection and creating immersive experiences between fans and their favorite celebrities.” 

“The blockchain gamification market continues to grow rapidly, reflecting a clear desire for immersive, gamified experiences from consumers,” said Tim Stokely, co-CEO of Zoop. “This presents a significant opportunity for Zoop to reimagine how the world’s biggest celebrities are connecting with their fans and transcending the one-sided social media engagements of the past. With the support of The HBAR Foundation and Ready Player Me, Zoop will be able to offer an experience that is engaging, immersive, and, above all, easy for anyone to access; no prior knowledge of web3 or metaverse is needed.

Zoop’s global launch will usher in a new era of interaction and allow users to access the benefits of Web3 without any of the baggage. No strangers to the business of connection, Phillips and Stokely leveraged their experience in the social space and knowledge of fan and celebrity connection to new levels with the launch of the first digital celebrity collectibles trading platform. Users can simply access the Zoop dashboard to buy, swap and sell collectibles. Participation in the Zoop ecosystem and playing in-platform games can unlock exclusive access to content and communities. For celebrities, the value is twofold: the seamless, direct connection established with fans and the talent on the platform receives 70% of revenue from all sales generated through Zoop.

Ready Player Me has also signed on as a strategic partner to support these efforts, bringing its industry-leading interoperability functions to the Zoop platform.  Celebrity avatars, the cornerstone of Zoop’s collectibles platform, can be used by fans in 4K+ supported apps and games across multiple metaverses and beyond. As the partnership evolves, game developers will also be rewarded for the time users spend on their games.

“The clear synergy between Ready Player Me and Zoop’s offering and audiences made it an easy decision to partner,” said Timmu Toke, Co-Founder and CEO of Ready Player Me. “We are excited to work with Zoop and can’t wait to see what we will build together.”

To support Zoop’s rapid growth and global launch, Zoop, which is built on Hedera, the leading public ledger for secure transactions. Hedera is renowned for its combined speed and performance, low network fees, and sustainability practices, including a negative carbon emissions policy, that is setting the tone for the entire industry. Network governance is provided by a diverse global body consisting of some of the world’s largest organizations. Through the Hedera network, Zoop platform users will be able to purchase, trade, exchange, and sell digital celebrity collectibles with exceptional speed, traceability, and transparency.

“In a fast-growing space that is rapidly evolving to meet consumer needs, Zoop stands apart from other platforms for its ambitions to truly disrupt the web3 space and lower the barrier to entry for fans everywhere,”  said Shayne Higdon, CEO of the HBAR Foundation, the leading independent organization supporting the growth of the Hedera ecosystem. “Led by one of the most experienced teams in this space with a proven track record of scaling rapidly and creating a global business on the basis of connection, we are thrilled to partner with Zoop as they prepare to launch next month.” 

About Zoop

Zoop is building an entire ecosystem based on officially licensed celebrity digital trading cards. Fans are easily able to buy, sell, trade, and collect the celebrities and influencers they idolize and admire through cutting-edge blockchain technology. On Zoop, fans can build out their card collections and earn fan rewards with exclusive celebrity experiences while forging communities of like-minded collectors. Zoop cards garner authenticity through official partnerships with an unrivaled roster of celebrities and brands onboard. To learn more visit www.zoopcards.com.

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About Hedera

The Hedera network is the most innovative, sustainable, enterprise-grade public ledger for the decentralized economy. The platform is governed by a globally diverse council of industry leading organizations, including abrdn, Avery Dennison, Boeing, Chainlink Labs, Dentons, Deutsche Telekom, DLA Piper, EDF (Électricité de France), eftpos, FIS (WorldPay), Google, IBM, the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), LG Electronics, Magalu, Nomura Holdings, ServiceNow, Shinhan Bank, Standard Bank Group, Swirlds, Tata Communications, Ubisoft, University College London (UCL), Wipro, and Zain Group.

For more information, visit www.hedera.com, or follow us on Twitter at @hedera, Telegram att.me/hederahashgraph, or Discord at www.hedera.com/discord. The Hedera whitepaper can be found at www.hedera.com/papers

About the HBAR Foundation

The HBAR Foundation supports the creation of Web3 communities built on the Hedera network, by empowering and funding the builders developing these communities. The Foundation’s six funds - focused on the Crypto Economy, Metaverse, Sustainability, Fintech, Privacy, and Female Founders - each support communities within those areas, and the interconnectedness enables applications to participate as part of a larger ecosystem. The collective power of these funds enables entrepreneurs, developers, and enterprises of all sizes to tackle some of the world’s largest problems, and create and control their own economies, all built on the Hedera public network. Whether you’re building something new or migrating an existing EVM-based application and community, the HBAR Foundation is here to support you. For additional information, please visit https://hbarfoundation.org