Bitcoin is so last year! Global market needs cryptocurrency pegged to real economy and customers among millennials and generation Z – and this is exactly what Fashion Coin is. This is the opinion of Kazbek Bektursunov – co-founder of Kiev Fashion Days show and fashion conglomerate LMG Group – who has visited Riga Fashion Week.
Fashion and coin are the two things that a couple of enthusiasts from Kiev – producer Kazbek Bektursunov and couturiere Anna Karenina (aka Anna K) – tried to put together for the first time. Cryptomonetization of fashion is probably the most obvious promising step of all that have been made recently. After all, the sales volume in fashion industry, according to some estimates, amounts to 6-9 trillion USD yearly. By the way, Anna K is just 22 years old and she is often compared with Vitalik Buterin from Etherium Foundation though this girl from Kiev is younger and much more ambitious.
You like it, you pay for it
Karenina demonstrated her new collection with crypto-accentuated design included in every item during Riga Fashion Week. The audience was enamoured with models wearing clothes with mining farm prints and «Decentralization» label.
Bektursunov’s lecture «Fashion Coin and Blockchain as a new fashion system» was perceived as the first real message conveying that the world of cryptocurrencies is not just about exchange rate volatility, stagnation and ICO bans in conservative countries but it can also be seen as an actual leap into the world of today – or the near future which is already here.
This future is being created by these two professionals in blockchain and fashion industry trends. Anna Karenina – designer of her own clothing brand who was included in Forbes “30 Under 30“ list in 2017 as the most successful young couturier. Anna is the author of both Fashion Coin idea and the new system of sales in the world of global fashion. Kazbek Bektursunov works together with Anna, elaborating and promoting her ideas.
All in all 185 fashion weeks are held every year all over the world. According to Kazbek‘s words, Blockchain Fashion Week will radically change patterns of clothing sales after the launch of Fashion Coins which is expected to happen this year. This idea seems to be so fascinating that tech companies and law firms have given credit to its perspectives at once but fashion insiders, leading fashion houses and glossy media still don’t take it seriously.
As Bektursunov pointed out, development of p2p platform for promotion and sales of designer clothes has been carried out not for sellers but for designers. The Kievans already presented this completely decentralized system at Blockchain Fashion Conference last autumn.
The technology enables one and the same platform to integrate demands of buyer with those of the brand: it provides customization, mutual promotion and formation of price which is on average 15-50% lower than if the same dress was bought for real dollars or euros via online shop in China, Europe or the USA.
Of course, price tags will show the price in Fashion Coins. Such cryptocurrency, according to its establishers, is essential first and utmost for buyers and for businessmen who invest in collections and fashion brands. It is promised that this trading platform will be as simple and user-friendly as Instagram, so that its usage will not be more complex than Instagram filter for buyers. And, of course, in case of payment in Fashion Coins, buyers will receive a guaranteed partial cash refund. Substantial cashback is expected – up to 50% off the payment which is very important for buyers.
So far this mega–idea at the junction of fashion and fintech operates at the white paper stage. Anna Karenina has launched limited line of T-shirts, hoodies and sweatshirts with «Never read white paper» inscription. When reading a lecture in Riga, Bektursunov told that the new cryptocurrency with smart contracts gives an opportunity to carry out crowdfunding and various ICO. Through the medium of Blockchain Fashion Weeks platform any designer can attract investments for any collection and every visitor of fashion show, representative of a fund, media or any online viewer will be able to invest cryptocurrency into production and marketing of the collection.
It can be generally said that we are talking about the whole ecosystem around cryptocurrency. It is expected that Fashion Coin will produce a lot of new startups within a few years from now. This is an ultimately open system where anybody can participate – from small-scale regional couturiers to Massimo Dutti fashion line and such fashion giants as Dior, Zegna and Miyake.
It is logical to assume that arrival of the new and potentially growing cryptocurrency to the market will be followed by creation of new systems of payment, marketing and capital mobilisation for each of its participants. Presumably, initiating IPO process is inevitable as well. Idea-mongers of Fashion Coins are ready to select their platform trading partners among designers who can offer world-level creative solutions and who are able to increase production volumes or, in other words, volume of sales.
Cryptofashion will change the world
«Fashion is turning sour, bitcoin got stale and we are offering something new to the world. Global market needs cryptocurrency pegged to real economy and customers among millennials and generation Z – and this is exactly what Fashion Coin is», – says Kazbek.
This year he plans to start yet another fashion marathon – Kiev Fashion Days – a week earlier than catwalk shows in New York, London, Milan and Paris, launching the service of switching to p2p payment system and «fashion» cryptocurrency. His further plans include recruiting specialists from all over the world and establishing partnerships in London, Paris, New York and San Francisco.
«As of today, old fashion and blockchain are supremely far apart from each other so that is why funny figures sometimes emerge in certain immature minds. However, we used to focus on partners more.»
As it was said at the lecture, classic systems of offline retail sales are dying out today. Today people have smartphones so they are less willing to go to a shop to buy something. Three thousand shops were closed last year in the United States. People, especially representatives of generation Z, don’t want to spend money for just owning an item today. There is no escape from world fashion capitals like Milan, Paris and Rome but fashion collections invest more in advertising than in production.
«When we buy an item we pay six times more than we would pay directly to designer. Everything else just defocuses artistic energy. Our buyer has changed: he is glued to his smartphone. He wants to buy an item because he has just seen it today and he wants to buy it directly from its creator.
Fashion is not only the most greedy industry, it is the most conservative one as well. But as money became digital, fashion is decentralized today and it is not subject to any prices. Today buyers want to communicate directly with designers and to pay money for uniqueness and creativity.
What are we offering? We will build a platform where buyers and designers will be able to create items together. Let’s assume that you have made an item and its prime cost is 50 euros. When a delivery price is added, the cost will increase two times. The shop will add yet another sum, so the grand total will be tripled. It means that the buyer will pay 300 euros. At our platform buyer asks you to add something into this item. If it lies within your style you make this addition and the buyer feels that you communicate with him. He can pay 50 euros in cryptocurrency and to acquire this item. So this is the platform that will change the world of fashion!»