The Crypto Explorer podcast: NFTs and the luxury market
Welcome to the written edition of our latest episode for The Crypto Explorer, a podcast by Sygnum, which takes you into the exciting world of crypto assets and Future Finance with conversations with leading figures in blockchain and finance.
In this episode, host Aliya Das Gupta and guests Kelly Vero, Chief Metaverse Officer at Aequaland, and Elena Baltaga, Relationship Manager at Sygnum, give you an inside look into the standardisation of Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs), NFT standards for luxury, the approaches of different brands in the virtual space and what is likely to come next.
Listen to the full podcast episode here.
Aliya Das Gupta: What does the standardisation of an NFT entail?
Kelly Vero: This is an oxymoron, because the whole purpose of decentralisation is that things are not standardised. Anyone can create an NFT and put it on the market. However, the question that arises is what makes it good? Last June, I produced something about an NFT and art luxury standard, and now this standard is starting to be adopted. It’s a fourfold standard, which includes the metadata backend information on a given NFT.
Aliya Das Gupta: What does this mean? What difference does this NFT standard make for a buyer?
Kelly Vero: What I wanted to do is bring the image to life. The buyer will have the image itself of the handbag and the geometric data of the image. This means that you have the export format of the image, so it can be used in a game or in any other virtual scenario, giving the added value of utility. Then, I added the digital rights management, which is so much more than a smart contract. Finally, I created an algorithm that supports the object itself.
Elena Baltaga: Yes, as Kelly mentioned, the standard is fourfold: value, dimension, ownership and utility. Which allows the NFT to be used in various industries for various purposes.
Aliya Das Gupta: There is no global NFT Council that is making big decisions. So, in this completely open market space, where is the room for something like a standard NFT? Is yours the only one, or is there something else that is out there?
Kelly Vero: This is a question of semantics, because you can call it standardisation, but you can also call it a framework. When I wrote the algorithm, I took it to the IEEE, which is the world’s largest trade organization supporting standardisation of a variety of different interoperable and technological advancements. The organisation wants to bring the NFT in line with their standards.
Aliya Das Gupta: As a community member, is this something that you could then even propose to a DAO?
Kelly Vero: Yes. The luxury community in the art community is a little more discerning. There are people like me that literally go out and look for specific pieces, and we have to be sure that the process is secure and trustworthy.
Aliya Das Gupta: Could you tell us what is happening in the NFT space with regard to luxury?
Elena Baltaga: I think everyone has heard that FTX is looking into the luxury industry and thinking how to develop this. Dolce & Gabbana already did something two years ago, and Karl Lagerfeld as well. In fact, this is not only happening in the fashion industry, but also in education and culture.
Aliya Das Gupta: Does an NFT no longer represent a bag? Or how do you ensure this kind of connection and continuity?
Kelly Vero: "The community buying into luxury and art has to decide if they are getting more value from an NFT or from the physical luxury good."
Kelly Vero: The community buying into luxury and art has to decide if they are getting more value from an NFT or from the physical luxury good. We could say that the digital version has more value than the physical one. Because, even after the bag is broken, you know the NFT is going to continue to bring you value in whatever state it is.
Listen to the full episode here to learn what Kelly means when she talks about putting NFTs into the luxury supply chain and how NFTs intersect with the human elements of luxury consumption.
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