Luxury fashion house Gucci is doubling down on its Web3 ventures. Although the brand has maintained an elusive presence on the blockchain thus far, the recent announcement of a partnership with Yuga Labs’ coveted Otherside metaverse project has set the NFT space abuzz with speculation.
While the companies had previously indirectly collaborated on offerings, this latest team-up is set to be a more robust and ongoing initiative centered within the broad-scale Yuga and Bored Ape Yacht Club metaverse. But, given Gucci’s past in Web3, is this something that will actually be of desire and benefit to those who hold Yuga NFTs?
Gucci’s on-chain past
Gucci first entered the metaverse in March 2022 by way of the Gucci Grails collaboration with 10KTF. Although it came about months prior to Yuga’s acquisition of 10KTF in November, considering Gucci opted to start accepting ApeCoin as a valid mode of payment in select U.S. branches in August, the two players were likely in talks long before this latest partnership announcement.
Things progressed slowly for the Gucci and 10KTF partnership after its initial launch. While the joint venture generated fanfare and led to the subsequent release of 10KTF’s Gucci Vault Material, it failed to retain significant traction. It wasn’t until December that hype was renewed when Robert Triefus, CEO of Gucci Vault and Metaverse Ventures, announced that Gucci was working on three major launches to happen in the first six months of 2023. Seemingly, this included the initiative with Yuga’s Otherside.
What to expect from Gucci in the Otherside
Little is currently known about the impending Gucci and Yuga partnership. What we do know is that the venture will play out over multiple years and entail some sort of digital wearables accessible to holders of Otherside NFTs or those who are part of the greater BAYC ecosystem.
According to statements made by Gucci featured in a report from Business of Fashion, the partnership will serve to bring together communities of both Gucci and Yuga “by exploring the intersection between fashion and entertainment in the Metaverse.”
“We are excited to unveil this multifaceted partnership with Yuga Labs, a leader and creative pioneer in web3,” said Triefus in a statement to Business of Fashion. “This will give us an active role in Otherside and 10KTF’s continuing narrative, unfolding in multiple forms.”
Unsurprisingly, the news of this Gucci and Yuga partnership has continued to inspire conversation throughout Web3, but with a noticeable absence of the fear, uncertainty, and doubt (FUD) that often plagues notable announcements.
It’s also bullish for co-creation in web3 – big brands that succeed won’t just launch an NFT collection and expect users to buy— atareh.eth | THE 🅳🅰🅼 SHOW (@atareh) March 27, 2023
The best way is to partner with web3 native brands, with flexible IP usage that lets the community co-create with them
This is a new paradigm
The story will likely change as more details — especially those surrounding mint price and utility — inspire nay-sayers and speculators to once again comment on the potentially cash-grabby nature of the release. But thus far, the community sentiment seems to be overwhelmingly positive. Of course, whether or not this partnership stands up to the decentralized and creator-focused values of Web3 or falls by the wayside is something that only time will tell.