Sotheby’s and Ledger have announced a partnership encompassing the renowned auction house’s exclusivity and the on-chain security company’s trusted custody solutions.
The partnership includes two main components: a co-branded Ledger Nano X that will be exclusively presented to buyers of premier digital art auction lots via Sotheby’s, as well as co-branded and curated educational content that will be developed through Ledger Academy and published to Sotheby’s Metaverse.
To gain a deeper understanding of the partnership, its offerings, and the potential it presents for both the digital and TradArt world, we spoke directly with representatives of Sotheby’s and Ledger.
Sharing more on what inspired the partnership, a spokesperson for Ledger told nft now, “We want to introduce the next generation of art collectors to the world of web3. Our partnership will fully embrace digital art, cementing its value proposition to make sure that digital artwork, the same as physical artwork, is meticulously safeguarded and maintained.”
As we observe convergence between the physical and digital, as exemplified by Grant Yun‘s The Last Supper being selected as the sole NFT in Sotheby’s recent Contemporary Curated sale, interest is growing for hybrid works and, along with it, the need to increase education — as well as streamline access to best practices and storage solutions.
On this note and speaking specifically to how this partnership is in line with its current objectives, a spokesperson for Sotheby’s shared, “Since we announced the expansion of Sotheby’s Metaverse in the spring, our partnership with Ledger only deepens our commitment to web3 and this community.
They added, “The idea of this partnership came together as an organic way to introduce many of Sotheby’s clients to the concept of self-custody and provide an overall educational platform for the security of digital art and the primary tenets of web3. So in addition to providing select clients with Ledger’s products, we are partnering with them to more holistically educate Sotheby’s collectors and promote accessibility to all things web3.”
Sotheby’s and Ledger shared that beginning in 2024, purchasers of top digital art auction lots will be presented with a limited edition co-branded Ledger Nano X. The device, as pictured below, features a brushed metal case colored in the auction house’s iconic deep blue, along with “Sotheby’s EST. 1744” laser etched on top.
Additionally, the device comes with a silver-colored chain that can be fixed to it if the collector wishes to wear the device. Ledger also expressed that there are plans to expand this offering to include the Ledger Stax in the future.
Ledger expressed that with concerns about security, self-custody, and decentralization currently at the forefront within the digital space, the co-branded Nano X acts as a beacon that reinforces Sotheby’s commitment to ensuring collector confidence.
The device is also meant to streamline collection management as well as provide ease of access through a user-friendly interface. Sotheby’s clients who have the hardware presented to them will also receive white-glove concierge onboarding and services courtesy of Ledger.
While Ledger has been known to offer collaborative Nano X devices outside of exclusive activations, like the recently launched Grant Yun Nano, they did express that “For our partnership with Sotheby’s, maintaining exclusivity was a core consideration, just as it is for the collectors purchasing art through Sotheby’s.”
In addition to exclusive hardware, the Sotheby’s x Ledger partnership includes an educational first approach, which will feature cross-branded and co-curated educational content through Ledger Academy, which will be published to Sotheby’s Metaverse. The goal of the educational content is to provide collectors with both background and insight into the fundamentals of web3 — namely concepts of self-custody, decentralization, and a guide to best practices for web3 security.
“Understanding and embracing web3, self-custody and decentralization will position traditional art collectors to gain access to new markets and adaptability of the evolving art landscape leading to an enriched virtual collecting experience,” shared Ledger’s representative, adding, “Education is important to both Sotheby’s and Ledger, and it’s important collectors know how to protect their digital value.”
Maintaining its exclusive approach for this particular partnership, these co-branded educational offerings will be exclusively available to those who are a part of Sotheby’s Metaverse. However, Ledger Quest does maintain a number of general educational courses, according to Ledger, where participants can earn Proof of Knowledge NFTs.
“Ultimately Sotheby’s serves collectors of the most high-value digital art on the planet, and those collectors demand uncompromising security,” shared the Sotheby’s representative, adding, “The limited, co-branded Ledger x Sotheby’s Nano X will leverage the reputation and trust associated with both companies, creating a sign of credibility to assure customers that their valuable digital assets will remain authentic and secure.”
On a similar note, Ledger’s spokesperson added, “The future of digital art is on the precipice of an ongoing evolution that will be driven by advancements and integrations in technology and security.”
“With enhanced technologies and increased accessibility, the digital art market will continue to grow, breaking down barriers for both artists and collectors to sell, own, and collect digital assets,” they explained. “Advanced security measures will be essential for self-custody to prevent fraud and theft.”