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Prada joins top luxury brands in Web3 with its Hirst NFT collection

Prada is the latest luxury brand to jump on the blockchain bandwagon. The Italian luxury fashion house has announced the launch of its own NFTs, which will be available starting this month.

This is a significant move for fashion as a whole, with Prada joining Gucci, Balmain and Balenciaga in their foray into crypto. With the Ethereum NFT market in a frenzy worth billions of dollars, it’s no surprise that major luxury brands are getting in on the action.

Prada will introduce 100 Ethereum NFTs on Thursday to coincide with the premiere of its new Timecapsule clothing. The blockchain-based artefacts will be sold alongside actual products from Prada’s latest collaboration with Cassius Hirst, son of artist Damien Hirst.

Similar to Gucci, and unlike the Hermes trial, the company’s foray into blockchain technology and crypto collectibles is a part of its wider digital strategy to drive sales and build brand loyalty among young consumers. 

PRADA X Cassius Hirst

The Prada x Cassius Hirst unisex button-down shirts are available in black or white, while the associated NFTs are a GIF of the pill capsule in black or white. The NFTs will have a number corresponding with each physical shirt as well as the drop’s serial number.

The Hirsts are no strangers to NFTs—debut Damien’s collection, “The Currency,” was released in July of last year and now has a floor price of 5.2 ETH ($9,360) per NFT over a year later.

But his latest collection is a little different from what you’re used to seeing from him. In contrast to Damien’s NFT drop, Prada’s Cassius collection NFTs will grant buyers access to both digital and tangible asset!

Technology Behind The NFT Drop

Prada’s latest NFT release is the work of the Aura Blockchain Consortium. Aura is a charitable organization formed by LVMH, Prada, and Cartier. It makes use of Quorum, an Ethereum-based blockchain platform that provides blockchain as a service, ConsenSys Rollups, and other blockchain solutions.

Prada’s Timecapsule releases began in 2019 as a means for the company to release limited edition goods. According to the press release, buyers of prior Timecapsule drops will also receive NFTs at a later date.

However, this is not Prada’s first NFT experiment. The company previously collaborated with athletic brand Adidas to debut the “Adidas for Prada re-source” collection on Polygon in January (that collection has only had 468 ETH in total volume traded, and its floor price is only 0.077 ETH, or $140, per NFT).

The Bottom Line

The partnership marks an interesting step in Prada’s journey into blockchain technology. Prada has always been known for its iconic designs and innovative approach to fashion. 

Luxury brands have traditionally been reluctant to embrace the idea of a tamper-proof, immutable blockchain ledger. However, a new breed of NFTs is starting to catch on in the luxury industry — and Prada is now among the leaders of the charge with its unique NFT drop.

The Prada NFT drop marks another major step forward in making blockchain technology mainstream by establishing a link between physical products and digital assets.

While NFTs might still be considered a novelty to some, luxury brands could certainly benefit from product authentication on the blockchain. The ability to trace an item back through its supply chain would help combat counterfeiting and provide information about where each item was at any given time during its life cycle.

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