Coachella, the Indio, Calif., music festival, has become the latest entity to release its own non-fungible token (NFT) collection.
Coachella’s pitch to potential bidders? Buy one of 10 “Coachella Keys” and receive a lifetime pass to the festival.
Festival organizers have partnered with cryptocurrency exchange FTX to auction its debut NFT collection on its own marketplace, which is minted on the Solana blockchain. Bidding will open on Friday; no minimum bid was disclosed.
Purchasing a Coachella Key will give buyers access to the festival every April “forever” and additional benefits like other virtual and in-person VIP experiences. Two other Coachella NFT collections called “Desert Reflections” and “Sights and Sounds” will also be available, but they don’t come with lifetime access. They’re linked to digital and physical collectible items, such as art prints and photo books, and will cost $180 and $60, respectively.
NFT buyers also have the opportunity for in-festival perks such as front-row seats to celebrity chef–cooked dinners at this year’s event, which will take place on April 15–17 and April 22–24. Harry Styles, Billie Eilish, and Ye (also known as Kanye West) will headline the show. West recently spoke out against NFTs, saying in a handwritten Instagram note: “My focus is on building real products in the real world, real food, real clothes, real shelter. Do not ask me to do a f**king NFT.”
Coachella is “excited about building new utility…for our fans with NFTs,” said the festival’s innovation lead, Sam Schoonover, in a statement. NFTs enable, he added, “true ownership of art and media on the internet. We wanted to take it one step further and use NFTs to enable ownership of experiences in the real world, too.”
People interested in buying a Coachella NFT will need to register for an FTX (U.S.) account from Coachella’s NFT marketplace. Coachella added that a portion of the proceeds will be donated to three charities, and a royalty will be given to the creators involved.
In recent months, cryptocurrency platforms like Bahamas-headquartered FTX have embarked on major marketing sprees to claim a stake in the burgeoning and highly competitive crypto, blockchain, and fintech sectors. FTX bought the naming rights to the National Basketball Association’s (NBA) Miami Heat arena and teamed up with recently retired footballer Tom Brady and his wife, model Gisele Bündchen, in a commercial last year.
Meanwhile competitors like Crypto.com have made a similar push: The Singapore and Hong Kong–based exchange inked a naming rights deal for an iconic Los Angeles sports arena that’s home to the NBA’s Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers. It also tapped Hollywood actor Matt Damon for its flagship commercial in a bid to become the Instagram of crypto. Both FTX and Crypto.com have bought ads for the upcoming Super Bowl 56.
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