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Woleet and Ulysse Nardin: Taking Blockchain to the Luxury Watch Market

Published 03 Mar 2021
Reference 6647
Region Europe
Summary

The case describes how a luxury watchmaker asked a French blockchain start-up to provide digital authenticity certificates for its 225 models. Ulysse Nardin, a 175-year-old Swiss watch company owned by Kering, has decided to certify ownership of its watches with Bitcoin-seals technology powered by Woleet, a start-up founded in 2015 by Gilles Cadignan. Thanks to Woleet, all its clients can offer immutable, transparent, time-stamped transactions with the speed and reinforced security of blockchain technology. The low-cost technology is also accessible to start-ups, SMEs and public organizations.

Teaching objectives

The case is short and concise. It does not waste words explaining the technology behind bitcoin seals as it is designed for students who simply need to know how the technology has been implemented at the commercial level of sales and warrantees. Instructors can use the case to illustrate the diversity of entrepreneurship in a rising tech domain, or to demonstrate the changes taking place in the luxury watchmaking industry where blockchain technology is a long-awaited tool - to stop counterfeit copies and ensure verifiable transactions through a simple drag-and-drop operation.

Keywords
  • Ulysse Nardin
  • Blockchain
  • counterfeit watches
  • drag and drop
  • Gilles Cadignan
  • François-Henri Pinault
  • Swatch
  • Woleet
  • Bitcoin
  • Kering
  • luxury watches
  • start-ups
  • TAG Heuer
  • e-certificate
  • Q12021