Budweiser and Visa lead the growing list of big consumer brands buying and promoting NFTs last week.
Budweiser has proudly boarded the NFT train, and it’s not the only big name to do so this week.
- From Visa to Budweiser: Big brands are taking NFTs seriously.
The beer giant on Tuesday changed its Twitter profile to an NFT hand-drawn beer rocket it bought for 8 ETH (about $26,000), and also registered an Ethereum domain name, beer.eth, for 30 ETH (almost $100,000). The NFT was designed by artist Tom Sachs as part of the Rocket Factory NFT series.
Budweiser is just the latest family name in recent days to signal its adoption of NFTs, unique blockchain-based tokens that can represent all types of physical or digital media, including artwork, music videos or music.
On Monday, payments giant Visa made headlines after paying $165,000 for a CryptoPunk , one of a series of 10,000 pixelated avatars from 2017. CryptoPunks are now selling for millions of dollars daily, and the announcement of Visa made it clear that Visa considers their CryptoPunk to be art:
“Over the past 60 years, Visa has built a collection of historic commercial artifacts – from the first paper credit cards to the zip-zap machine. Today, as we enter a new era of NFT commerce, Visa welcomes CryptoPunk #7610 to our collection,” tweeted Visa.
Over the last 60 years, Visa has built a collection of historic commerce artifacts – from early paper credit cards to the zip-zap machine. Today, as we enter a new era of NFT-commerce, Visa welcomes CryptoPunk #7610 to our collection. https://t.co/XoPFfwxUiu
— VisaNews (@VisaNews) August 23, 2021
And on Friday, Arizona Iced Tea announced it had purchased a Bored Ape NFT from the Bored Ape Yacht Club series. The beverage brand plans to use its Ape in its marketing materials. (Yuga Labs, the creator of the collection, later told Decrypt that Arizona Iced Tea used his brand logo in a “inadequate” in his tweet, a sign that interesting copyright disputes are likely to arise in the NFT world.)
— AriZona Iced Tea (@DrinkAriZona) August 20, 2021
All of this is a clear sign that this second wave of the NFT boom is different from March and April, when brands like Charmin, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut were racing to launch their own NFTs representing their own products. Visa buying an NFT from an existing collection shows that a major credit card company, one that is extremely cautious about aligning its brand with any partner, sees artistic value, financial gain, and positive reputation benefit in adopting CryptoPunks.
Visa wants access to community NFT, which can be seen as a positive sign for Visa’s future adoption of cryptocurrency in general. The same goes for Budweiser that registers an .eth domain name.
While NFT prices can certainly plummet again, what big-money brands do in the NFT industry could have a more lasting impact: How soon will we see brands paying licensing fees to owners of rare, high-profile NFTs? And which big brand will be the next to buy?