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Starbucks, Polygon, blockchain… One of these doesn’t belong, or does it?

By Darius McQuaid

12:25, 14 September 2022

 A Starbucks logo is seen in Times Square on 3 September, 2022 in New York City
Starbucks Odyssey, the Web 3.0 experience, will launch later this year - Photo: Getty Images

Starbucks, the multinational coffee shop giant, is working with Polygon (MATIC) to provide the blockchain technology to build Starbucks Odyssey, the American chain's Web 3.0 experience.

The move will allow Starbucks Reward loyalty programme members and Starbucks employees in the US to earn and purchase non-fungible tokens (NFTs).

Polygon said that by implementing Web 3.0 technology, Starbucks can “unlock access to immersive coffee experiences, from unique merchandise and artist collaborations to invitations to exclusive events.”

From 12 September, customers and employees were allowed to join a waiting list for a chance to be the first to receive access to Starbucks Odyssey, which will launch later this year.

No crypto required

In order to purchase the limited-edition stamps NFTs, no cryptos or crypto wallet is required.

Each stamp NFT includes a point value based on its rarity. The more points a member accumulates, the more experiences they will have access to, which range from virtual espresso martini-making classes to invitations to trips to the Starbucks Hacienda Alsacia coffee farm in Costa Rica.

DOGE/USD

0.14 Price
-1.670% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.0012872

BTC/USD

67,793.15 Price
-0.090% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0616%
Short position overnight fee 0.0137%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 106.00

ETH/USD

3,457.26 Price
-1.420% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0616%
Short position overnight fee 0.0137%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 6.00

XRP/USD

0.62 Price
+2.390% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.01168

Every NFT stamp will feature iconic Starbucks artwork, and a portion of funds raised from the sale of the NFTs will go to charities supported by Starbucks.

Starbucks is committed to reducing its carbon footprint, and wished to utilise Polygon’s proof-of-stake (PoS) blockchain, which uses less energy than proof-of-work (PoW) blockchains.

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‘Top priority’

Ryan Butz, vice president of loyalty, strategy and marketing for Starbucks, said: “Building Starbucks Odyssey using technology that aligns with our sustainability aspirations and commitments is a top priority. We took a very thoughtful and thorough approach when evaluating which blockchain to utilise and Polygon’s fast, low-cost, and carbon-neutral network is the perfect foundation for our first digital community.”

Brady Brewer, Starbucks’ chief marketing officer, said: “Starbucks has always served as the ‘third place’, a place between home and work where you feel the warmth of connection over coffee, community and belonging. The Starbucks Odyssey experience will extend the ‘third place’ connection to the digital world. For the first time we are connecting our Starbucks Rewards loyalty programme members not just to Starbucks, but to each other.”

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