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6 M’sian brands that leveraged NFTs’ utility in different ways to complement their business

Lately, it feels as though the hype for NFTs as art collectibles has plateaued. As we’ve learnt from minting an NFT ourselves, any Tom, Dick, and Harry can do so with few qualifications, knowledge, or even talent, and at any price they’d like.

But NFTs can be used in more ways other than just art collecting. When looking at the technology of an NFT at its core, its value stems from the tech’s traceability, immutability, and transparency on the blockchain.

In a previous article, we’ve laid out utility functions of NFTs that have the potential to be adopted in Malaysia. We’ve now noticed a handful of brands utilising them to complement their business models, and here are six examples.

1. AD Butcher & Steak’s loyalty programme

Image Credit: AD, Butcher & Steak

F&B spots, usually new ones, would encourage customers to keep coming back for more by providing you with a loyalty card. “Get nine stamps and your 10th drink is free!” they often coax. But let’s be real, how many of us actually keep the card safe enough to earn the next stamp? 

AD Butcher & Steak, a family-oriented steakhouse in Bukit Jelutong, Shah Alam employed a “dine-to-earn” concept for its loyalty programme.

To claim the restaurant’s complimentary NFTs, customers must dine in, scan a QR code, and input their MetaMask wallet address into the submission form. A random piece of their NFT will be airdropped to the user within 24 hours.

Image Credit: AD, Butcher & Steak

With a total of eight NFTs to collect for the loyalty programme, the more you ascend the loyalty ladder, the more perks will be unlocked, ranging from discounts to free sides and free ala carte meals. The final reward is a meal of premium BBQ Back Ribs, after which you start the dine-to-earn cycle all over again.

The NFT collection cannot be bought from AD Butcher & Steak directly. To ascend the ladder, collectors can either make repeated visits to the restaurant, or purchase the NFTs from another holder who’s selling them on Pentas.io.

2. MegaBabyVerse’s ad space

The way magazines, newspapers, certain blogs, and billboards generally make money is by selling what the advertising industry calls “ad spaces”. They’re useful to brands because they help them gain exposure via these media’s existing audiences. 

That’s something the MegaBabyVerse does in its metaverse project. Developed by OVR Token X Network, the team has essentially built a virtual city with units inside buildings, and are selling them as NFTs.

Inside the MegaBabyVerse

The last we reported about the project in February, we explored their metaverse city and noticed some shops in the virtual mall were already occupied by several tenants.

What you’ll find inside each “shop” are external links to the brands’ contact details, and a shopping cart icon that leads to the OVR marketplace to purchase featured items sold at these shops.

It’s still early days to comment on whether such a strategy would entice customers to shop your brand more, or simply become a hindrance for them.

One thing we can say though is it’s an interesting way to “shop”, and when the technology gets improved and becomes more seamless, we could see it taking off.

3. MinNature Malaysia’s NFT tickets

Remember the movie ticket stubs we used to collect? Each ticket was unique in how it displayed the movie’s screening time, theatre hall, your individual seat number, and a lesser-paid-attention-to serial number.

So even after they had served their main (and only) function of getting you through the initial security gates, you’d still collect them as memorabilia. NFTs ticketing works the same way, just digitally.

MinNature Malaysia is one business utilising immutable NFTs as tickets.

Image Credit: MinNature Malaysia

The local museum showcases miniature versions of real-life Malaysian landmarks. The team has so far been selling NFT entry tickets when you pay using any crypto since we last interviewed them back in December 2021. 

At the time, the team began introducing NFT tickets as a way of moving into the digital space to recover from the pandemic. Optimistic about their future, they believe the NFTs will also help expand their reach.

4. Miss Universe Malaysia Organization’s voting mechanism

Most competition talent shows engage with their audiences at home by allowing them to vote via SMS or phone call.

Now, NFT Pangolin and Miss Universe Malaysia Organization (MUMO) have collaborated to introduce a voting mechanism using NFTs. 

Image Credit: Miss Universe Malaysia Organization

Made in the likeness of the 15 Miss Universe Malaysia finalists, it was part of the event’s The Universe Collection where each NFT sale on NFT Pangolin would account for five votes. 

10K Universe Collection NFTs are available for each contestant, and each NFT is priced at 1 ZTX (RM20). ZTX is the currency used on Zetrix, which is the blockchain powering the minting of NFTs on NFT Pangolin.

The bids for MUMO’s other series, including an auction-only Competition Collection, would also translate into votes. But this time, the higher bids amount to higher points.

5. MyeongDong Topokki’s membership programme

Vincent Lua, founder of MyeongDong Topokki (MDT), believes his Korean fast food restaurant can leverage NFTs to stay relevant to social trends and expand the brand’s bandwidth.

The NFTs offered by MDT are quite similar to AD Butcher & Steak’s, in that owning the brands’ NFTs gets you exclusive perks at the restaurant. However, there’s no progression cycle for MDT’s NFT membership.

The restaurant in Genting Highlands / Image Credit: MyeongDong Topokki

Designed in-house based on their mascot, Pokki, 970 variations of the NFTs are available on OpenSea with a floor price of 0.08 ETH (about RM630.56 at the time of writing).

Depending on which NFT you get, the perks can be enjoyed at MDT’s Genting outlet, dubbed their first NFT restaurant.

6. OVR Estate’s rental income

If the name sounds familiar to you, it’s because they are the same team behind the MegaBabyVerse, which we mentioned just a few points above.

OVR Estate tokenises properties, including a few units at a Johor condominium, The Astaka that were turned into 1,000 editions of NFTs. Owners of the NFT then become investors of a unit and are guaranteed a 1% stake of the rental fee for 12 months. 

Mock-ups of The Astaka in its brochures / Image Credit: The Astaka

Investors who purchase 10 or more NFTs which cost USDT 100 each (around RM430 at the time they were sold) are entitled to a 2D1N free stay at The Astaka, which OVR Estate states is a luxury condominium.

For now, OVR Estate disclosed that the NFTs for The Astaka have officially been sold out. Other currently ongoing property projects include Amberside at the Country Garden Danga Bay and a coworking space by The Q business, which are in Johor, but these utilise no NFT mechanisms.

If you’re curious about the legality of this investment scheme, OVR Estate reasoned that there are no formal regulations surrounding the legality of such an investment scheme. This is because the NFT marketplace itself is decentralised, which means no government or central organisation holds control.

Hence, DYOR. 

(If you don’t know what that means, here’s a glossary).

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Some may argue that just because we have access to NFTs’ tech, not every kind of business needs to use them. This may be sparked by NFT controversies, like how NFTs can be harmful to the environment, or purely just overhyped.

So, does every business need to have that level of traceability? 

Well, no. 

But NFTs being highly traceable, immutable, and transparent on the blockchain, serve especially beneficial use cases like tickets, logistics, and certificates, for example.

To have unique digital tokens stored on a blockchain means that all trails and transactions will be recorded. If it works as intended, NFTs can negate frauds or scalpers when purchasing tickets and goods, or the faking of documents to sell them at higher prices to profit. 

It’s a problem Malaysia is all too familiar with when it comes to concerts for high profile artists, or even counterfeit bags, makeup, etc. and not to mention faked identities for elections.

  • Read more of our NFT content here.

Featured Image Credit: MegaBabyVerse / MUMO / AD Butcher & Steak

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