Luxury brand conglomerate LVMH, owner of the Louis Vuitton Malletier, popularly known as Louis Vuitton, is on the verge of completing modalities that will see it apply blockchain in confirming the genuineness of luxury goods.
Between May or June, all eyes will be on the AURA, the cryptographic provenance platform which is expected to host the Louis Vuitton and another LVMH brand, Parfums Christian Dior. Should this work, LVMH plans to extend it to its other 60-plus luxury brands, before finally extending it to brands managed by its competitors.
This was however, not an easy task for LVMH, who had to set up a team to work closely with ethereum design studio ConsenSys and Microsoft Azure.
The AURA was built as a permissioned version of the ethereum blockchain known as the Quorum.
Quorum was developed by JPMorgan with its focus on data privacy, that is to ensure that no information will be leaked between brands or their customers.
According to a source at the firm, who was involved in the whole process, the system was built with the intention of tracking luxury goods through the supply chain stages, from gathering raw materials to the point of sale.
“To begin with AURA can give proof of legitimacy of luxury things and trace their origins from raw materials to purpose of sale and on the far side to used-goods markets.
The next part of the platform can explore protection of artistic belongings, exclusive offers and events for each brands’ customers, as well as anti-ad fraud,” the source said.
Continuing the source added that LVHM plans to transfer the intellectual property associated with the AURA system to some other body, to give other competitors the right to ownership.
“So Gucci, for instance, could decide to join the platform and be a shareholder – in which case their claim to the IP would be as great as Louis Vuitton’s claim to the IP.
That is the most distinction between this project and also the IBM Maersk project, which hopefully makes it much more comparable to Komgo, the trade finance consortium.”
He said, rather than creating an app of some kind, AURA will run behind the brands using it.
“So if you’re a client of a luxury whole, you’re not aiming to see AURA; you’re aiming to see the Louis Vuitton app or the app of
another luxury brand,” the source explained.
Despite the fact that LVMH, was established 1854 and boasts of well over 60 luxury brands which includes brands like Dior, Dom Pérignon and Hublot, it is not the first to propose an authenticity-tracking blockchain, as brands like Arianee and Vechian, have done that in the past.
While lauding the steps taking so far, the source stated that the project is in line with luxury-goods industry standards, especially with the recent anti-counterfeiting efforts of the European Union Intellectual Property Office.