Fashion conglomerate LVMH is joining forces with the Prada Group and Cartier, part of Richemont, to form the Aura Blockchain Consortium to address the “shared challenges” of communicating authenticity, responsible sourcing and sustainability in a secure digital format.
The move marks the first global blockchain consortium dedicated to the luxury industry through an “unprecedented collaboration” from LVMH, the Prada Group and Cartier, to provide consumers with additional transparency and traceability.
The platform will be open to all luxury brands worldwide, no matter the sub-sector or geography they operate in, with the consortium adding that it will “offer flexibility to support companies of various sizes” and will “adapt to individual needs”.
The technology offered by the Aura Blockchain Consortium will enable direct-to-consumer, showcasing product history and proof of authenticity, as well as a product’s lifecycle, from conception through distribution for greater transparency.
The concept will allow consumers to “strengthen their relationship with their favourite luxury brands,” added LVMH, Prada and Cartier in a statement.
Cyrille Vigneron, president and chief executive of Cartier International and member of Richemont’s board and senior executive committee, said in a statement: “The Aura Consortium represents an unprecedented cooperation in the luxury industry. Blockchain is a key technology to enhance customer service, relationship with partners and traceability. The luxury industry creates timeless pieces, and must ensure that these rigorous standards will endure and remain in trustworthy hands. We therefore invite the entire profession to join this consortium to design a new luxury era enabled by blockchain technology.”
The technological system, a multi-nodal private blockchain, is secured by ConsenSys technology and Microsoft. It will record information in a secure and non-reproducible manner and generate a unique certificate for its owner.
Bulgari, Cartier, Hublot, Louis Vuitton and Prada are already active on the platform and “advanced conversations” are also being held with brands both within founder groups and independent brands to join the consortium soon.
Each brand on the platform will continue to fully own and be responsible for its data, added the consortium, while adhering to the strictest measures on customer privacy, to prevent the exchange of competitively sensitive information. Information on the blockchain will be stored in a way that it cannot be changed, tampered with or hacked.
Toni Belloni, managing director of LVMH, said: “The Aura Blockchain Consortium is a great opportunity for our sector to strengthen our connection with customers by offering them simple solutions to get to know our products better. By joining forces with other luxury brands on this project, we are leading the way on transparency and traceability. I hope other prestigious players will join our alliance.”