Welcome again to Now Runway, the place we report back to you from the frontlines of the digital style and luxurious revolution. As we speak you discover us in Paris, the place we hosted an intimate breakfast celebrating digital style and luxurious within the lush backyard of Hotel La Fantaisie. Having solely opened their doorways just a few weeks in the past, we have been their first personal occasion, and lingering company skilled an insider’s tour put up breakfast.
Learn on to see what you missed outdoors of Paris and within the digital house, together with a brand new sneaker launch from Puma and Roc Nation, Snapchat upgrading their digital avatars’ clothes, and Korean style model Musinsa elevating $190 million.
Puma and Roc Nation sneaker launch
Sportswear behemoth Puma and leisure firm Roc Nation — established by iconic rapper Jay-Z as a successor to his famend hip-hop label, Roc-A-Fella Data — have collaborated on a brand new sneaker vary that pays tribute to the development of the mixtape and incorporates NFTs.
The RS-XL Mixtape sneaker sequence is the brainchild of designers Alexander-John and Emory Jones. The digital part has been spearheaded by Authentic, an modern startup merging bodily merchandise with digital experiences via its distinctive “LGT Tag” know-how.
The vary showcases three distinct sneaker designs, every impressed by totally different phases of the mixtape’s evolution and aptly named Cassette Tape, Disc, and Playlist. Each pair of sneakers conceals a novel LGT Tag, backed by blockchain, underneath the left shoe’s tongue.
This NFC (near-field communication) chip will be scanned utilizing a smartphone to disclose unique digital content material. Every NFC chip can be linked to an NFT minted by Authentic utilizing the Avalanche blockchain. The NFT-associated LGT Tags can validate bodily objects, together with footwear and different clothes.
Consumers can even achieve entry to weekly mixtape releases, a 14-track playlist that includes new music from rising Roc Nation artists, and “unrestricted behind-the-scenes entry to life as a Roc Nation artist.” The label presently represents notable artists comparable to DJ Khaled, Alicia Keys, Fever 333, and Rihanna. Moreover, house owners could have entry to a brand new documentary exploring the historical past of hip-hop. Puma famous that this launch aligns with this yr’s wider celebration of hip-hop’s 50-year historical past.
The Mixtape vary of sneakers is out there for buy on-line or in-store at Puma, Foot Locker, and Champs North American retailers, priced at $130 per pair.
In a press launch, Authentic founder and CEO Calvin Chan shared, “This collaboration is the primary time in historical past that manufacturers of this caliber are leveraging next-generation know-how to do extra than simply promote a product. Collectively, we’re serving to inform a narrative, elevate creators’ voices, and have fun a motion that has captivated the world for half a century.”
Snapchat’s Bitmoji avatars
Snapchat has introduced a brand new avatar type that brings the Bitmoji to a extra immersive 3D degree, set to be launched worldwide within the upcoming weeks. This refreshed avatar style enhances options comparable to hair texture, facial shading, and physique dimensions. Your Bitmoji can now exhibit a extra vibrant smile, a extra astounded expression when stunned, and convey even essentially the most intricate feelings.
As well as, Snapchat is enhancing the best way you work together together with your Bitmoji by introducing superior modifying that permits you to modify your avatar in a 3D house, utilizing zoom and rotation capabilities for a extra detailed view. The method of changing actual clothes into Bitmoji attire entails meticulous consideration to element, proper right down to the final sew.
With the introduction of the brand new avatar, digital clothes will seem rather more lifelike, enabling you to specific your private style sense on Snapchat as authentically as you’d within the bodily world. Bitmoji gives a novel manner for folks to speak on-line utilizing an animated, inventive storytelling format, and the transition to 3D permits for the creation of essentially the most adaptable avatar but, higher reflecting our numerous world group.
Ok-fashion platform Musina raises $190 million
South Korean on-line style platform, Musinsa, and world funding powerhouse KKR have formally introduced a Collection C funding spherical of $190 million. Musinsa, established in 2001 as a web based sneaker group, has advanced right into a distinguished on-line style market in South Korea, boasting over 8,000 native and overseas designer manufacturers, together with its personal in-house label (Musinsa Customary). This positions Musinsa on the coronary heart of South Korea’s creator economic system for style.
Over time, Musinsa has broadened its scope to include an all-encompassing ecosystem that features communities, a model incubator (Musinsa Companions), a direct-to-consumer model operator, and an offline multicultural lounge (Musinsa Terrace). The latter facilitates face-to-face interactions with prospects and gives online-centric style manufacturers a bodily house for pop-up shops. In 2023, Musinsa earned recognition from Fast Company as one of many “10 most modern Asia Pacific corporations of 2023” for its position in “globalizing Ok-fashion.”
This deal represents KKR’s inaugural know-how progress funding in Korea, aligning with its Asia Subsequent Era Expertise (“NGT”) technique. This strategy goals to again the enlargement of groundbreaking, disruptive corporations within the Asia Pacific area throughout key sectors comparable to software program, client know-how, and FinTech.
Mukul Chawla, Companion and Head of Progress Fairness, Asia Pacific for KKR, shared in a press launch, “Musinsa has developed itself as a high client Web platform in Korea and a differentiated market by its skill to scale rising manufacturers, allow the creator economic system for style, interact and supply a high-quality e-commerce expertise for purchasers. We see huge alternative for MUSINSA to construct on its main place in a fast-growing Ok-fashion market that continues to shift on-line and broaden globally on the again of Ok-culture’s explosive attain.”