Why would a luxury goods retailer want a blockchain? Today, CoinDesk announced that Louis Vuitton plans to launch its’ own blockchain in-house, to help solve what is perhaps the biggest problem that they and their competitors have.
To understand what this is and why using a blockchain to tackle it is important, think about the fact that the market for counterfeit luxury goods is massive. One particular 2017 report estimated that the global counterfeit goods market was bringing in around $460 billion a year.
Louis Vuitton aims to launch a blockchain to monitor the authenticity of luxury goods from end-to-end, which it will roll out to all of its’ brands, followed by those of certain, undisclosed competitors.
At face value, this idea is nothing particularly new or novel. In its’ simplest form, a blockchain is a digital ledger that tracks the movement of assets. Here, it is easy to estimate that the Louis Vuitton chain will be no different, except for what will likely be a feature that helps them to scan each product in circulation onto the blockchain.
To understand what this might be, think RFID. Essentially, this is an improvement upon barcode scanning because companies can have items scanned via radio waves, so they do not have to see each one.
The reason why Louis Vuitton’s effort may be more successful than many other similar projects is that they have been working with partners like Microsoft Azure and ConsenSys for about a year already. More specifically, CoinDesk mentions that the blockchain will be called AURA and is built on Quorum, which is basically a private version of the Ethereum main chain.
Quorum also now appears to be hosted by J.P. Morgan, which brings the question of whether AURA will ever be allied with JPM Coin in any fashion. For now, because of their distinctly different use cases, this appears unlikely. Still, since Louis Vuitton plans to sell the rights to its’ blockchain to a third-party, perhaps AURA will be one of the first blockchains to attain the status of an industry standard.
By: BGN Editorial Staff