Starbucks Partners With Micah Johnson’s Aku NFT Collection

Starbucks Partners With Micah Johnson’s Aku NFT Collection

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Starbucks’ Web3 loyalty program Odyssey has announced a collaboration with the Aku non-fungible token (NFT) collection. 

The collaboration will see the next Starbucks Odyssey Journey feature a stamp “designed by Aku” and a donation to a non-profit. 

The Starbucks-Aku Collaboration 

Starbucks has collaborated with the Aku NFT collection for its next digital collectible Stamp, available on its dedicated Discord channel. The Aku NFT collection was created by former Major League Baseball player Micah Johnson and focuses on empowering young kids to dream big and pursue their dreams. The collection has attracted interest from several high-profile celebrities, with NFTs from the collection having been purchased by Pusha T, Trevor Noah, and Tyra Banks. 

Micah Johnson thanked Starbucks for their support, tweeting on his official Twitter handle, 

“I’m extremely grateful to @Starbucks for supporting our mission to not just be a character that represents good but a character that actually does good.”

The New Journey 

Starbucks plans to launch the new Journey on the 17th of July. The new Journey, called “Aku Adventure,” will allow Odyssey members to “embark on a new mission with Aku.” A post on the Discord channel states that the new Stamp has been “designed by Aku,” and the Journey will be available exclusively to Odyssey members until the 13th of August, 2023. Additionally, as part of the launch, Starbucks has also announced that it would be donating $100,000 to Blessings in a Backpack, a non-profit dedicated to addressing food insecurity among children. 

The Odyssey Program 

Starbucks had launched its highly anticipated Odyssey program in December 2022, combining customer loyalty rewards with NFTs and other gamified elements. The Web3 extension of the hugely popular Starbucks Rewards Program was opened to a select group of waitlist members which included customers and existing employees. Those joining the program could engage in interactive “Journeys” and earn “Journey Stamps,” which came in the form of Polygon-based NFTs. Users could also collect Odyssey Points and gain access to new benefits and experiences in the future. 

At the time of launch, the company had released a statement which said, 

“Starbucks Odyssey is an experience surrounded by a digital community where members can come together, interact, and share their love of coffee. Starbucks is using meaningful elements of Web3 technology to reward members in innovative ways.”

The company has been rolling out limited-edition NFTs to the members of the invitation-only Odyssey loyalty program for a considerable amount of time. Back in March, the company announced the release of “The Siren Collection,” which offered 2000 Stamps, each priced at $100. The Siren Collection saw staggering demand, with collectors complaining of a wave of technical glitches and long wait times. More recently, Starbucks launched the “Starbucks First Store Collection.” The collection consisted of 5000 stamps, each priced at $99. This launch had a far smoother launch than the Siren Collection. 

CMO Bradley Brewer stated that Starbucks wanted to invest in blockchain for a considerable amount of time but was waiting for a concrete way of using the technology to help expand its business and loyalty program. According to Brewer, the company wanted to make NFTs the gateway to the digital community but obscured the exact nature of the technology to bring more users to the Web3 platform. 

“It happens to be built on blockchain and web3 technologies, but the customer — to be honest — may very well not even know that what they’re doing is interacting with blockchain technology. It’s just the enabler.”

Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.

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