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Hennessy joins luxury blockchain consortium Aura


Today Hennessy announced plans to integrate the Aura traceability blockchain. The spirits brand is the ‘H’ in LVMH, the luxury group that initiated the Aura project. LVMH has since been joined by founding members Prada, Richemont’s Cartier and OTB, which owns Diesel and other brands.

Hennessy wants to provide traceability for its spirits from the distiller to the customer as part of a sustainability drive. Aura’s initial objective was to prove the authenticity of luxury products, a simpler solution with only two parties, the brand and consumer. However, the same solution can also provide complete supply chain traceability, albeit with more steps along the way, enabling companies to demonstrate their sustainability credentials.

The spirits brand has already used Aura to prove authenticity for the collector’s edition of Hennessy Paradis sold in China during the Chinese New Year. Each buyer received an authentication certificate via WeChat.

This is not Hennessy’s only blockchain deployment. It is selling two limited edition bottles of its Hennessy 8 cognac in conjunction with the BlockBar marketplace. The online solution uses non-fungible tokens (NFTs) as a digital twin for physical bottles of spirits held at a bonded warehouse. Buyers can choose to redeem the NFTs for the physical bottle or trade them.

Another Aura partner OTB is also active with NFTs and has created a division to target metaverse fashion, a major opportunity for the luxury fashion sector. And LVMH’s Louis Vuitton launched an NFT with Beeple art.

Aura itself is working on developing an NFT solution. Last week it launched its software as a service (SaaS) offering for its core authenticity and traceability product. This provides a simple solution to enable easy adoption of its technology. Rather than needing to set up blockchain nodes, companies can connect using APIs and use the solution with a white-label user interface. The platform was originally developed with ConsenSys and uses Quorum, a private permissioned version of Ethereum.