Wanguba Muriuki is a content crafter passionate about putting everything into writing. He is passionate about Blockchain and Traveling. He is also an experienced creative and technical writer. Everything and everyone has a story to tell. What better way to capture the real story than in words.
The Louis Vuitton luxury brand conglomerate looks to introduce blockchain mass adoption to the fashion industry by launching their AURA Blockchain that will be open for use by even their competitors.
The nascent blockchain technology has many applications. Most commonly associated with the financial industry and for cryptocurrency trading. However, it is exciting to note that the fashion industry has also discovered an ingenious use for this technology. The luxury brand conglomerate that owns the Louis Vuitton fashion label, LVMH, has developed a technology dubbed the AURA Blockchain.
The fashion giant will use the technology to prove the authenticity of all high-priced branded goods. Also, they will use the technology to track the luxury goods they offer. Code-named AURA, the cryptographic provenance platform will go live in May or June. It will feature Louis Vuitton together with another LVMH brand, Parfums Christian Dior.
Later, the technology will extend to LVMH‘s other 60-plus luxury brands and also those of its competitors. A full-time blockchain team dedicated to the project have worked relentlessly for over a year. They work closely with Microsoft Azure and Ethereum design studio ConsenSys as highlighted by two reliable insiders.
AURA is built using a permissioned version of the Ethereum blockchain known as Quorum. Quorum, developed by JPMorgan, focuses on data privacy. Neither LVMH nor ConsenSys and Microsoft would comment on the project before the official launch. But a reliable source stated:
“To begin with AURA will provide proof of authenticity of luxury items and trace their origins from raw materials to point of sale and beyond to used-goods markets. The next phase of the platform will explore protection of creative intellectual property, exclusive offers and events for each brands’ customers, as well as anti-ad fraud.”
Acting Behind the Scenes
LVMH controls at least 60 luxury brands. These brands include several well-known names like Hublot, Dom Pérignon, and Dior. In 2018, the group published revenues of $53 billion. However, it proposed an authenticity-tracking blockchain after Vechain and Arianee had already done it. As we reported mid last year, the Swiss Luxury Goods Giant, Richemont, already started utilizing blockchain to enhance its supply chain.
When asked why LVMH would allow third parties to place themselves between its brands and their partners, the source said:
“This should be done in the form of an industry consortium rather than a third party actor coming into the marketplace.”
The group wants to offer the service in an exclusive white-label form to other brands including its competitors. Hence, AURA will run behind the brands using it instead of developing some kind of an app. The source added:
“So if you are a customer of a luxury brand, you are not going to see AURA; you are going to see the Louis Vuitton app or the app of another luxury brand”
LVMH seeks to donate all intellectual property (IP) to an independent entity owned by the participating brands. That strategy has a high probability of succeeding in getting even the group’s competitors onto the blockchain platform. All brands that join the platform will become shareholders with an equal claim to the IP to that of Louis Vuitton.
Additionally, Quorum’s data privacy tools will guarantee that no information leaks between brands or their customers. The blockchain will hence facilitate cooperation among firms in line with the recent anti-counterfeiting efforts of the European Union Intellectual Property Office.
After CryptoKitties What’s Next?
LVHM chose an enterprise variety of Ethereum because its blockchain developed the ERC-721 non-fungible token (NFT) standard. The platform allows for digital representations that are immutable and offer a trademark of a one-and-only, unique item. The most famous NFT is the whimsical game CryptoKitties but this type of token has immense business potential.
For instance, it can focus on a single handbag and track its entire journey from production to the point of its first sale. Also, it can track the multiple owners that have had the same bag and sold it. LVMH group also chose the Permissioned ethereum version since it considers it an intermediate conduit to a future grander vision after its maturity.