Bulgari’s exclusive watch to include NFT

Luxury jewelry brand Bulgari is launching an exclusive watch limited to ten editions. Each watch will have a QR code engraved that, when scanned, yields access to a unique non-fungible token (NFT) representing digital art.

The watch, Octo Finissimo Ultra, claims to be the thinnest mechanical watch in the world, measuring only 1.8mm in thickness. The technology involves innovative processes and equipment that highlight the watch’s futuristic positioning, which is enhanced by the integration of NFTs.

Besides the digital artwork, the NFT that’s accessed through a watch’s unique QR code also serves as a method of authentication. At a limited supply of ten and a cost is $440,000 (according to Gizmodo), it could be a magnet for counterfeiters. As such, scarcity and product authenticity must be protected to maintain the watch’s value, and NFT technology facilitates this.

Other luxury watch brands such as Breitling and Hublot have used similar technology to ensure product authenticity, mostly through the use of blockchain to implement digital passports. The passport technology is also an NFT but was previously used for functional rather than creative NFT applications.

On the other hand, Bulgari is making full use of the opportunity to tie creative content to the watch. Besides the NFT artwork, the QR code also gives access to information regarding the history, concept, design, and manufacturing process that underpin the watch’s production.

“This fabulous benchmark that we are setting today with the Octo Finissimo Ultra is in fact for me and for all the teams an apparently impossible dream to come true,” said Bulgari’s CEO Jean-Christophe Babin. “One that guarantees that Bulgari will forever be recognised as a company that has written some of the finest pages in Swiss watchmaking. And the fact that this is an Italian house makes us particularly proud.”

The launch is in partnership with the LVMH founded AURA blockchain consortium, which focuses on initiatives that use blockchain technology to fight counterfeiting in the luxury goods market as well as proof of sustainability. It recently announced plans to get involved in creative NFTs, and Temera, Luxochain, and Polygon Studios were also involved in the Bulgari project for that aspect. Hence there were two separate smart contracts, one on Aura’s private permissioned blockchain network and the artwork one on the public Polygon blockchain.

Bulgari is part of the LVMH luxury consortium, which until now, had not engaged much in NFTs beyond authenticity except for Hennessy, which sold exclusive cognac through NFTs. Yet, the opportunities in the industry will likely make it inevitable for other brands to soon get involved.

A report on luxury goods and the metaverse carried out by Morgan Stanley estimated that by 2030 metaverse gaming and NFTs could account for 10% of luxury revenues (equivalent to €50 billion or $60bn) and contribute towards 30% of profits.

Outside of fashion, “luxury cars” are heavily involved with creative NFTs. Lamborghini launched NFTs linked to space exploration, and McLaren is planning to launch luxury car NFTs with InfiniteWorld.

(source of news: https://www.ledgerinsights.com/bulgaris-exclusive-watch-to-include-nfts/)

Fashion Giant Gap Launches Gamified NFTs on Tezos

The Gap is the latest clothing brand to jump on the non-fungible token (NFT) bandwagon by teaming up with InterPop to launch its first collection on Tezos.

The San Francisco-headquartered retailer said Wednesday it’s rolling out a gamified digital experience allowing customers to purchase a limited-edition Gap hoodie.

Gap’s NFT collaboration is designed by Brandon Sines, the artist behind Frank Ape, a cartoon mythical creature, and will be built on the Tezos blockchain.

Pieces can be purchased via the Gap NFT website and will go on sale Jan. 13 for 2 XTZ each (about $9 at press time) until Jan. 15. There will be more Gap NFT drops throughout January, the firm said in a press release.

In an attempt to give Gap customers a more digital experience, the brand said it will gamify the experience by allowing them to collect Gap hoodie digital art at different levels. Participating users will be able to collect digital art by Brandon Sines and a physical Gap x Frank Ape by Sines hoodie.

“Gap has always been at the intersection of music, art and culture, so we are excited about this growth opportunity in the digital space with artists like Brandon Sines,” Chris Goble, Gap’s chief product officer, said in a press release.

In August, the British luxury fashion brand Burberry launched its NFT collection in partnership with Mythical Games. The Burberry NFTs featured items via Blankos Block Party, a game with digital vinyl toys known as Blankos that live on the blockchain.

Read more: Dolce & Gabbana’s NFT Collection Said to Attract Bidding Interest From DAOs

Following Burberry, the Italian haute couture fashion label Dolce & Gabbana teamed up with luxury marketplace UNXD built on Polygon, to launch its Collezione Genesi NFT collection, which fetched approximately $5.65 million.

In 2020, Gap faced supply chain issues, losing $300 million in sales and reporting net sales of $3.9 billion for the quarter ended Oct. 30, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Gap is doing everything it can to stay relevant and attract a younger demographic. Most recently the brand signed a deal with rap artist Kanye West to launch a new clothing line called Yeezy Gap.

(Source of News: https://www.coindesk.com/business/2022/01/12/fashion-giant-gap-launches-gamified-nfts-on-tezos/)

Hennessy Enters The NFT Space With $226,000 Release

Hennessy is creeping its way into crypto. The LVMH-owned Cognac brand has released its first NFTs, priced at $226,450.

Each will represent physical and digital ownership of the first and last bottles (1 and 250, respectively) of Hennessy 8, a limited-edition expression from the Cognac house.

The bottles and assets will be sold to a single buyer on the spirits NFT platform BlockBar on January 12th. Pricing is at 70.47 ETH (approximately, or $226k USD).

The liquid itself honors the legacy of 7 of the house’s master blenders, combining one eau-de-vie from each generation of blenders and presenting it in a limited-edition, ultra-luxury formatting.

The physical attributes includes a commemorative sculpture and a Baccarat-blown and engraved carafe, along with a pipette, cork holder and chest designed by Arik Levy and made with oak staves from La Sarrazine, the Hennessy cooperage. 4 tasting glasses originally designed 30 years ago by George Riedel and Yann Fillioux have been reissued for the occasion. A personalized authentication plate and numbered certificate wrap up the physical package.

Let’s be clear: you can drink this Cognac (if you can pony up the funds). The BlockBar platform stores the physical bottle for free. If you buy it, you’re issued a digital version of the bottle that serves as a verification of ownership, proof of authenticity and the right to have the physical bottle delivered upon request.

“If you own the NFT, you own the underlying physical asset—often held in custody by a trust company,” explains BlockBar co-founder and President Sam Falic.

When the buyer purchased the non-fungible token (NFT), they claim ownership of the bottles themselves, with a cryptographic version being held by BlockBar. The buyer can redeem the physical product or trade the NFT version in the digital BlockBar marketplace. “Each token is proven to be scarce, non-interchangeable and authentic,” he continues. “Once the physical asset is redeemed from the vault, the token is burned.”

In 2021, the NFT market generated over $23 billion, a huge jump up from the $100 million in trading volume recorded the year prior.

BlockBar launched in October 2021 and has since found much success offering up ultra-rare bottles to crypto-savvy collectors. “Our launch release of 15 bottles with Glenfiddich sold out in 4 seconds and since that release, a few bottles have been resold,” says Dov Falic, co-founder and CEO of BlockBar. Some flipped bottles of the 21-year-old, Armagnac-aged cask Scotch commanded lofty prices of up to $288,000, according to PUNCH.What does that mean for the spirits industry?

Though NFTs live in the digital space, Falic and cousin Dov find NFTs offer real-life answers to many of the spirits industry’s current pitfalls. “Asset-backed NFTs are both the most secure way to protect a liquor collection, and serve as a hedge against the market,” says Falic. “At BlockBar we only partner directly with brand owners, such as Hennessy, and therefore the NFTs serve as a digital certificate of authenticity, eliminating any concern for counterfeits.”

While the NFT may change hands as much as the purchaser pleases, the physical product is shipped twice; once from the brand to a bonded secure facility, and once to the final consumer when they’re ready to enjoy. “This gives the ability for consumers around the globe to transact and invest with one another and removes the concern of authenticity, importation and storage.”

With these authenticity concerns addressed, the Falics finds that a whole new demographic of collectors are increasingly interested in the space.

“The number of people who have started collecting in this category has grown exponentially, yet access to these exclusive collections is still incredibly difficult. Collection investing has always been difficult due to the issues with storage, importation and authenticity,” Sam continues. “This is where NFTs play a huge role in the future of the industry. Offering NFTs is the best way to show transparency and guarantee authenticity to all buyers.”

The category is also increasingly enticing to buyers who can’t afford the oft-grandiose sum for many of these purchases. The duo has seen an increased appetite for fractionalized ownership, citing a recent Penfolds cask purchased and shared by a group of friends.

“The ability to fractionalize ownership with tokens is another reason why NFTs make so much sense for this industry,” says Sam. “The other interesting part about casks is you can own a collection without having it physically and can sell that onwards with relative ease before bottling.”

“Our goal is to democratize high-end spirits and address issues for existing and potential consumers,” Dov concludes. “Blockchain and NFTs are the future and the vehicle by which we solve many of the growing pains in the industry.”

(Source of news: https://www.forbes.com/sites/katedingwall/2022/01/10/hennessy-enters-the-nft-space-with-226000-release/?sh=1adac4cf35a0)

blockchain NFT marketplace

Time magazine unveils ‘TIMEPieces’ NFT collection

Time magazine President Keith A Grossman has unveiled the landmark ‘TIMEPieces’ NFT collection – a community initiative that features original artwork from more than 40 artists.

The collection of TIMEPieces will consist of 4,676 unique NFTs curated from 37 pieces of original artwork. The prestige collection is part of the Build a Better Future series.

The artists for the genesis collection of TIMEPieces were organised by Time Creative Director DW Pine, who originally invited 19 artists to participate in the collection.

From Thursday, September 23 at 12pm ET, collectors will be able to purchase TIMEPieces via a randomised, blind drop on nft.time.com. Each TIMEPiece is priced at 0.1 ETH to attract a broad spectrum of potential collectors and enable long-time readers of the magazine to participate.

Collectors of the TIMEPieces will be eligible for invites to future events and access to a variety of ‘exclusive digital experiences’.

Additionally, the collection will be turned into a commemorative hardcover edition over the holiday season and be displayed at Dreamverse – the World’s First NFT Art and Music Festival, in NYC on November 4.

Time magazine has worked to deliver cryptocurrencies to its audience, including introducing crypto payments in leading assets such as Bitcoin and Dogecoin via crypto.com and auctioning limited-edition front covers as NFTs.

Time also included Ethereum Founder Vitalik Buterin in its ‘100 Most Influential People of 2021’ list.

Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian spoke of Buterin’s importance to the internet and Web3 technologies for Time, saying: “I’ve never been more excited about the potential of the Internet, and that’s largely thanks to Vitalik Buterin.”

The magazine additionally included Digital Currency Group – the parent company of Grayscale – and leading exchange Coinbase in its 2021 Top 100 Most Influential Companies list.

(source of news: https://finance.yahoo.com/news/time-magazine-unveils-timepieces-nft-120250872.html)