The Charlotte Hornets are teaming up with conversational AI firm MeetKai to launch the first NBA virtual fan shop.
According to MeetKai, the new digital Hornets shop will upgrade the e-commerce experience for fans by modernising the way they can interact with their team from the comfort of their homes.
The new shop is inspired by the brick-and-mortar Hornets Fan Shop located at the Spectrum Center in North Carolina. It can be accessed through any mobile device or web browser, and offers a variety of Hornets merchandise such as jerseys, t-shirts, as well as digital collectibles.
Physical purchase will be delivered to the provided home address by the Hornets’ e-commerce partner, Fanatics.
James Kaplan, Co-Founder and CEO of MeetKai, commented: “At MeetKai, we are honoured to power the NBA’s first immersive shopping experience, allowing fans to engage with their favourite team and shop for gear in a space designed to make them feel like they’re there in person on game day.
“We are proud to partner with the Charlotte Hornets to provide their fans with interactive experiences that connect them closer to their team.”
Fans are encouraged to visit the team’s official website, app and social media channels for more information on the new digital experience and take advantage of special offers. The Hornets’ also remind that shipping is free for US residents.
Fred Whitfield, Hornets Sports & Entertainment President, said: “As technology continues to evolve, it’s important that we meet our fans where they are, and this is a great opportunity to enhance that connection.
“The Hornets Virtual Fan Shop allows fans to enjoy the gameday shopping experience from anywhere, and we’re excited to offer this innovative new opportunity.”
MeetKai also emphasised on the fact that with its new virtual fan store, the Charlotte Hornets are demonstrating their commitment to innovation through building up new experiences for their fans around the world.
Weili Dai, MeetKai Co-Founder and Executive Chairwoman, added: “I’m thrilled about this partnership as a former basketball player myself, I’ve always been passionate about the power of sports to bring people together and innovate, in this case, into the wonders of AI and everything it has to offer for fans worldwide.
“The Charlotte Hornets are industry leaders transforming the future of the NBA’s retail experience, so we’re delighted to have the opportunity to work with the team and build their presence virtually.
“MeetKai’s disruptive and cutting edge AI technology is enabling The Charlotte Hornets to offer fans convenience and immersive shopping like they’ve never seen before, furthering our mission of expanding access to our world leading AI technology products.”