This is one of the most interesting use-cases for the Non Fungible Tokens.
The biggest NFT platform at the time of writing, OpenSea, is now listing Rolex watches. Now, the Rolex company itself is not doing so – the responsible party is an account called “Duchamp’s Auctions.” They offer the “Physical Watch + NFT,” and they might be on to something.
Looking At That Rollie It’s About That Time
As all of you high rollers probably know, Rolex watches come with a certificate of authenticity. Forgery is a huge business in this world of ours, and high-priced items like these watches are one of its main targets. Older genuine Rolex come with a page similar to a University diploma, while newer models come with a plastic card similar to a credit card. Both of those can also be forged. An NFT cannot.
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As Bitcoinist explained before, “unlike a Bitcoin token for example, where one can be interchanged for any other, NFTs are unique and no one is like any other. Non Fungible Tokens effectively take a medium like a piece art, a tweet or digital media and turn it into a one-of-a-kind token.”
In a way, Non Fungible Tokens are just that, certificates of authenticity. And the technology NFTs are based on provides several degrees of security over paper and plastic. An official marriage between luxury items and the nascent NFT industry might be on the horizon.
Open Sea, NFTs, And Cryptocurrencies’ Mainstream Adoption
Circle’s CEO Jeremy Allaire offers another perspective on the Rolex NFT. He thinks this could be the way to mainstream adoption of digital currency, “NFTs are clearly the “crossing the chasm” app category for digital currency and blockchain apps, and UX matters immensely. NFT markets need to move towards mainstream users with digital goods priced in fiat, but fulfilled with native digital currency such as USDC.” And he thinks OpenSea is leading the way.
In any case, their NFT marketplace keeps making waves. OpenSea recently announced that “the platform had secured $23 million in Series A funding led by venture capital firm a16z with further backing from investors including Mark Cuban, Dylan Field, Lina Xie and Naval Ravikant.“
In that statement, they claim that OpenSea grew 100x in the last six months. This isn’t hard to believe considering the amount of media coverage, the institutional backing from the art world, and, most of all, the exorbitant prices some NFT projects have gone for.
ETH price chart on Bitstamp. Source: ETH/USD on TradingView.com
In recent news, Polkamon sold their first NFT for 75 ETH, and auction powerhouse Christie’s prepares for an $8M sale of a package of rare CryptoPunks NFTs. Even more impressive, Christie’s recently sold digital artist Bleeple’s “EVERYDAYS: THE FIRST 5000 DAYS” for $69M.
About that breakthrough sale, the auction house said: “Minted exclusively for Christie’s, the monumental digital collage was offered as a single lot sale concurrently with First Open, and realised $69,346,250. Marking two industry firsts, Christie’s is the first major auction house to offer a purely digital work with a unique NFT (Non-fungible token) — effectively a guarantee of its authenticity — and to accept cryptocurrency, in this case Ether, in addition to standard forms of payment for the singular lot.”
Exciting times ahead, as cryptocurrencies interact with legacy institutions in their way to mainstream adoption.
Are you reading this, Rolex?
Featured Image by Nastya Dulhiier on Unsplash