When companies enter the non-fungible token, or NFT, sector, they hope to engage fans and customers. The goal is to highlight new technology or merchandise, and rally consumers. Sometimes, this endeavor is successful, and other times it is not. Recently, GM’s Chevrolet brand entered an auction with a new 2023 Corvette Z06. It did not receive any bids.
What is an NFT
Non-fungible tokens, also called NFTs, are a unique form of crypto asset. These tokens allow owners to prove ownership of either real or digital items. The ability to prove digital ownership has become more and more important in recent years. Many online platforms, games, and organizations allow users to buy digital gear. For example, skins in Fortnite or digital real estate in The Sandbox.
Historically, there was no central hub to regulate or show who owns what. Separate entities could delete digital items with no warning. NFTs are not controlled by any individual organization, so a business can’t regulate them and users can’t dispute the tokens.
Ethereum, a cryptocurrency blockchain, backs NFT tokens. Users buy or sell these unique tokens, and each token is tied to unique artwork. An artist continues to receive royalties on each sale that follows.
Chevy Auction on SuperRare
When Chevrolet decided to enter the NFT world, they partnered with artist Nick Sullo who goes by the handle xsullo. Whoever won the auction would have received the NFT token associated with Sullo’s art along with a physical 2023 Corvette Z06 painted in an uber-rare mint green color. It’s so rare that you won’t find it at your Chevy dealer: in fact, it would be the only Corvette in that color on the roads.
The auction was hosted on the site SuperRare. The auction lasted five days originally. However, when there were no substantial bids, the auction site opened up for 24 more hours to give anyone who missed the auction a chance to bid. There were no more bids in that time. SuperRare opened the auction at 206 ETH, which is about $238,000. There were a few bids for less than 10 ETH with the high bid being 6.9 ETH, or $7,524. It is unknown whether Chevrolet will follow up with that bidder.
Concerns for the Future
When it comes to the failed Corvette auction, Chevy does not seem to be very worried. A spokesperson mentioned that this was their first foray into Web3, but that they will continue to explore ways to use this technology to help customers. The car brand intends to use what they have learned to be better prepared for the future.
Along with Chevrolet missing out on the NFT money, DonorsChoose, their charity partner, suffered as well. This charitable organization was set to receive a percentage of the funds for the sale. The future will tell if GM will venture into digital sales and auctions again. Perhaps they will push the boundaries again soon?
Chevrolet doesn’t seem too concerned with the failed auction. “Our first step into Web3 has been educational, and we will continue to explore ways to leverage technology to benefit our customers,” Chevrolet spokesperson Trevor Thompkins told Corvette Blogger. “We’ll take what we’ve learned and apply it to future projects.”
Other automotive companies including Ferrari seem content with utilizing the NFT sector to reach new and existing fans.
Time will tell if General Motors comes back into the NFT space soon or puts things to rest for a while.
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