Saturday, September 23, 2023

Starbucks plans NFT collections for coffee drinkers

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Shreya Christina
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Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz, along with executive vice president and chief marketing officer Brady Brewer, explained to investors during their presentation of the second quarter 2022 results that the coffee company will “add new concepts such as ownership and community-based membership models that we see developing in the Web 3 space.” Brewer continued, saying, “Imagine purchasing a new Starbucks digital collectible, with that product also serving as an entry ticket to a global Starbucks community, one with compelling content experiences and collaboration all centered on coffee.”

A post on the company blog does more to explain what all that means:

We plan to create a series of proprietary NFT collections, whose ownership initiates community membership and access to exclusive experiences and benefits. The themes of these collections will emerge from Starbucks artistic expressions, both heritage and newly created, as well as through world-class collaborations with other innovators and like-minded brands.

The plan will be rolled out as a sort of digitally collectible-enhanced loyalty program, powered by last year’s hottest term, non-fungible tokens (NFTs). An unspecified set of exclusive benefits should add to the value currently offered by Starbucks, which has locations almost everywhere.

What are the experiences and benefits, and why do they need blockchain technology to implement? Your guess is just as good as ours, but Starbucks executives are looking at the company’s early history of rolling out mobile payments and Wi-Fi, and think things will work in a similar way here with a noticeable addition to the profit. The same day Starbucks pitched NFTs to its investors, those investors opened the Wall Street Journal to see a headline read”NFT sales are falling

Schultz’s first NFT pitch came during an Open Forum appeal to employees to admit that the company “hasn’t done enough” to support them and promise that it will “do better for our partners.” As part of his pitch to the unions that some stores are starting to join and which he said could “put someone between us and our people,” Schultz sought to bond with the much younger, noticeably less billionaire-like working-class masses. ask a recognizable question about their investments.

As you can see in the videomanaged to find one person who said they had invested in NFTs, and immediately started explaining how of all the many NFT projects, bands, celebrities and communities launched in the past year or so, “I could” We can’t find one with the wealth of assets Starbucks has, from collectibles to all of the company’s heritage.”

So far, the company doesn’t know which blockchain it can use, or if it will use more than one, but it’s certain that whatever approach it takes will be sustainable — even if researchers have said those eco-friendly blockchain promises will. don’t always add up.

Still, all Starbucks needs to do is create a simple crypto wallet experience that works for its 26.7 million Rewards members, manage to secure their accounts against relentless phishing attacks, and secure its own processes against smart contract flaws or worse. . Once they’ve done that, they can easily add digital tchotchkes with verifiable and immutable proof of ownership to any purchase, assuming that’s what customers and employees actually want.

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