Selfridges Mainstreams Selling NFTs with In-Store Pop-Up
British department store Selfridges is capitalising on the momentum gathering behind NFTs by becoming the first major retailer to sell crypto assets in-store. From January 28 to March 31, visitors can buy digital versions of dresses by French fashion house Paco Rabanne and artworks by Hungarian-French op art trailblazer Victor Vasarely with regular currency as part of the department store's Universe project.
Building on Selfridges’ desire to be perceived as at the forefront of virtual web3-ready retail (in September 2021 it sold physical and NFT-based digital fashion concurrently – see Yahoo Ryot Lab x Selfridges + Charli Cohen in Best Brand Engagement Ideas from the S/S 22 Shows), the Universe concept will be located at the department store’s Corner Shop pop-up space.
Alongside selling NFTs, it will stock Paco Rabanne’s new (physical) spring/summer 2022 collection. Both the physical and digital garments include Vasarely’s optical illusion prints, referencing Rabanne’s long-time fascination with the art form. Fifty-five of Vasarely’s artworks are displayed in-store (37 are for sale), with other designs adorning 24 window displays.
Selfridges intends to sell 1,800 NFTs, created by London-based NFT platform Substance, with prices ranging from £2,000 ($2,700) to more than £100,000 ($136,400). Select Paco Rabanne NFTs will be sold with their physical counterparts, and digital garments can be worn across multiple (as yet unspecified) virtual platforms.
Visitors can buy the NFTs from a touchscreen kiosk with a credit card. Usually, NFT purchases require cryptocurrency, registration to an auction site or marketplace, and a digital wallet. Instead, when a customer purchases the NFT in-store, Substance automatically creates a digital wallet for them, storing the NFT within it.
The project also includes a metaverse experience on Selfridges.com and virtual world Decentraland, available later this month, where visitors will be able to “interact with Vasarely-inspired patterns”. Details are TBC.
See also Metaverse Brandscapes: A New E-Commerce Dawn in Digital Commerce: 9 Trends & Opportunities, 2022/23.