Blockchain technology is set to be the next big thing for luxury brands

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From digital buying to digital garments, the luxurious panorama is evolving with experiences past what its purchasers have been used to.

The most recent innovation to be launched? Blockchain expertise.

In a collaboration even greater than Gucci x Balenciaga, LVMH, Richemont and the Prada Group have come collectively for the primary time to launch a blockchain platform generally known as Aura Blockchain Consortium (or Aura for brief).

At present, a handful of manufacturers owned by the three rival luxurious conglomerates are already on Aura. That features French style label Louis Vuitton, Italian jeweller Bulgari, Swiss watchmaker Hublot (all owned by LVMH), Richemont’s Cartier, and Prada.


By Aura, prospects of those manufacturers will get to hint the origins of the luxurious items that they buy — all the way down to the supplies used to create them. Under, we delve into the way it all works, how consumers will profit from it, and why the platform represents a game-changing second for the luxurious world.

(Picture courtesy of Getty Photographs)

How does Aura work?

Aura, developed partly by Microsoft, runs on a blockchain. That’s the identical expertise that cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum are constructed on, in addition to what allows the gross sales of non-fungible tokens (NFTs).

Basically, a blockchain is a safe, everlasting and sometimes public report of transactions. As their knowledge can’t be altered, blockchains are often seen as clear — not like the ledgers overseen and up to date by conventional banks.

For Aura, the blockchain acts as a database of luxurious merchandise. Every product will probably be assigned a singular digital id, in the identical means that artworks are actually being related to NFTs. Consider it just like the paperless model of the certificates that usually come together with your luxury watches.

On these digital certificates, luxurious manufacturers will report the origins of their merchandise. In Louis Vuitton’s case, the certificates reveal the provenance of the uncooked supplies of their merchandise, the factories the place they had been manufactured, and the shop from which they had been in the end purchased. You’ll have the ability to inform precisely what leather-based is utilized in your Louis Vuitton purse, or what kind of tanning course of it has undergone.

“Each step of the merchandise’s life cycle is registered, enabling a brand new and clear storytelling,” shared LVMH.

Louis Vuitton has already been issuing certificates for its leather-based items, footwear, equipment and garments. And if you happen to’ve purchased something from Prada within the latter half of 2020, chances are high it’s already recorded on Aura. It is possible for you to to entry that info and register your Prada purchases on a brand new app that the Italian style model is launching quickly.

Louis Vuitton, together with Hermes and Chanel, is among the most counterfeited luxurious model on this planet (Photograph credit score: Getty Photographs)

Say goodbye to fakes

You recognize the trouble of attempting to determine if a designer bag bought on eBay, Carousell or Vestiaire Collective is genuine? Or squinting at photos to examine the brand on a Cartier Love bracelet? Or trying up the historical past of a used Hublot timepiece to see if a product itemizing checks out?

Aura goes to remove all that guesswork — in addition to the ache of buying a knockoff.

With the aforementioned certificates, you possibly can basically monitor and hint any product by manufacturers which might be on Aura. And since it’s a personal blockchain, solely the taking part manufacturers can replace the data on the platform.

That is going to make buying on the luxurious resale market, which has expanded considerably in the previous few years, so much safer. You gained’t be scammed into spending your cash on counterfeit items, which had been collectively worth US$461 billion (S$611 billion) in 2016 — a determine that has little question risen for the reason that pandemic has fuelled spikes in on-line gross sales. This can even stop the resale of stolen luxurious items.

It is a large win for manufacturers like Louis Vuitton, whose monogrammed purses are probably the most knocked-off designer merchandise on this planet. And it’s an enormous blow for the counterfeit items market, which frequently funds legal organisations and terrorism.

With Aura, luxurious jewellers can lastly present proof that they don’t use blood diamonds. Tiffany & Co. is thus far the one model to take action. (Picture courtesy of Tiffany & Co.)

Is there a future in Aura?

With a number of the world’s largest luxurious manufacturers already on Aura, you possibly can wager there may be.

Aura’s founding teams are already working to incorporate the opposite manufacturers of their portfolios (assume Dior, Van Cleef & Arpels, Panerai and Montblanc). Additionally, the blockchain platform is now open to all luxurious manufacturers all over the world, from main impartial gamers (resembling Hermès and Chanel) to these with area of interest, smaller companies.

Aura will probably be particularly interesting to luxurious jewelry manufacturers, which have lengthy struggled to supply diamond traceability. (Up to now, solely American jeweller Tiffany & Co. presents an in-depth have a look at its provide chain, making certain that their gems are sourced ethically and sustainably.)

High quality, traceability, transparency and authenticity — these are what at this time’s luxurious prospects are looking for after they make their expensive purchases. And with Aura, they’ll know precisely what they’re getting.

See the unique submit here.

Header picture courtesy of Getty Photographs

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