Taika’s Mateverse Goes Mint
Functional coffee brand Taika’s collaboration with creative community Web3 Friends with Benefits (FWB) comes to fruition this week as the California-based brand announced it will release 400 mint NFTs on Thursday to support the launch of its limited-edition coffee shop. yerba mate.
According to Taika co-founders Kal Freese and Michael Sharon, the partnership with FWB — an online community in which members must hold a $FWB token to guarantee “shared in-game skin” — began around six months and was approved by a member. vote in December. The collective effort led the brand to develop a caffeinated mate drink inspired by European nightlife and club culture, with the packaging and flavor profile chosen by a Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO) structure.
Freese said the decision to make a club-style yerba mate drink came from FWB management, who wanted to create a web3-inspired version of the cult drink commonly associated with rave and hacking subcultures. Taika held live tasting sessions via video calls with over 100 FWB members to find the best formulation for the drink.
Dubbed the “Mateverse,” the co-created drink is made with L-theanine and organic lion’s mane extract, sugar-free, and contains 60 mg of caffeine and 10 calories per 12 oz. can.
“We took a similar approach before coming up with ideas internally, coming up with a few formulations, and then testing them with friends, families, or clients,” Freese said. “We’re now building a beta testing club within our own customer base, and I think what we’ve done here was just to do it on a larger scale and do it more systematically, which is proving very , work very well.”
Now, Taika is gearing up to finalize the product via an NFT drop. On Thursday, 400 NFTs will launch on the open market for 0.08 ethereum (approximately $246 at press time) with a limit of one token per authorized crypto wallet. Holders will receive two versions of the mate to taste and will have until May 9 to use a QR code on the can to vote for their favorite. The winning formulation will be mass-produced and sold to the public through Taika’s website and NFT holders will receive a 15% lifetime discount.
While the FWB collaboration is independent of Taika’s core business, which revolves around a traditional retail strategy, Sharon said the project has helped reframe its mission around community and creativity. . While there are no immediate plans for another Web3 project, the company intends to continue to play in the space and work on new ways to create a cross between CPG and digital innovation. .
“All of this collaboration has affected how we’ve changed the business going forward, and how we think about reframing not just marketing and communications, but a whole relationship with the promise we make to consumers and people. “, says Sharon.
gmgn supply co. Launching with crypto-inspired cereal
As major CPG conglomerates dip their toes into the Web3 industry through NFT drops and other crypto-inspired marketing campaigns, a new DAO, gmgn supply co., launched this month with the lofty goal of “taking on General Mills, Nestlé and Unilever” via a decentralized economic model. – and it partnered with cereal maker Off Limits to produce its first brand, gm Cereal.
Billed as a next-generation CPG company with a mission to build a portfolio of 100 brands, gmgn was founded by Phillipe LeBlanc and Mark Homza, co-founders of creative agency Funday. The couple said the inspiration for their first project – a collaboration with cereal maker Off Limits called gm Cereal – came from a November 2021 tweet from Richard Chan – better known as @richerd, the founder of the web3 creative platform manifold.xyz – which suggested that “someone should create a new cereal brand and call it gm”, referring to web3 slang for “Good Morning” (naturally, “gn” stands for “Good Night”).
Homza noted that Funday had already been invested in several Web3 projects, but the tweet served as a starting point to create a new collectively managed CPG company through a DAO. The idea quickly caught the attention of Off Limits founder and CEO Emily Elise Miller, who offered their company’s services to create the cereal. The core team has since grown to include angel investor Robert Lendvai, former Johnson & Johnson Vice President Debra Lutz, crypto investor Jon Kane, consultant Aaron Paul and Hilary Dupont, former director of the brand marketing at Milk Bar.
“[We thought] “What if a major conglomerate like General Mills or Procter & Gamble or PepsiCo, if one were to be born today, what would it look like?” It wouldn’t be like it was in the past with the traditional organization,” LeBlanc said. “And then we started saying, ‘Well, it would be a DAO, it would have hundreds of brands that it wanted to launch, it would be community-built, community-owned, community-consumed, isn’t it not? ‘ It would be a celebration of all things Web3.
DAOs are run without centralized direction and decisions are made by community vote, but LeBlanc said gmgn will have a day-to-day operations management team while major choices — namely regarding products and trade deals — will be open to the community. Currently, gmgn is operating as a corporation, but is currently preparing for an expected drop of 2,222 NFTs this summer, which will grant holders membership and voting rights in the DAO. After the launch of NFT, gmgn will dissolve the legal entity and exist only as a DAO, he added.
According to LeBlanc, gmgn will primarily handle the marketing of its products, while the actual production and distribution will be handled by third-party brand partners, with Off Limits ideally being the first of many. However, depending on how quickly gmgn is able to expand its operations, it may eventually seek to bring in additional logistics as well under the management of DAO members.
Gm Cereal, which is expected to launch this summer, will be sold online through Shopify and on the Off Limits website. Product features – what else – a Bored Ape on its packaging and boxes will come with scannable prizes including free NFTs, token drops, and physical merchandise.
“We’ve seen learning to win, there’s been moving to win, we’re really trying to build this idea of ’consume to win’ which is you consume different products from the gmgn supply co. you have the ability to earn NFTs and earn in the DAO and earn tokens from other third parties,” LeBlanc said. “So it brings this idea of how in the past you bought grain and got a toy in the box. So we’re bringing this fun element into the web3 culture, where there won’t be a physical toy, it’s more about having NFTs and some kind of digital equivalents.
Homza added that the DAO model will also help lower the cost of acquisition to attract new consumers by tapping into a pre-existing online community. LeBlanc noted that the “fun elements” of free products and the personal stake of DAO members will help word of mouth spread faster, hoping to minimize marketing expenses early on.
While Off Limits is currently gmgn’s only confirmed brand partner, LeBlanc said he hopes gmgn can partner with like-minded CPG startups to produce additional products, noting that gmgn will help brands achieve new consumers in the web space3.
“It will allow us to launch quite quickly because once we have made the first [product] and learn from the first, then it’s about choosing the right partners and replicating that model,” he said.
More Web3 and CPG industry news:
- Baby food brand Once Upon a Farm explores the opportunities of web3. In a post on LinkedIn this week, co-founder and CEO John Foraker commented “how social has [leveled] the playing field for emerging #brands to break through most of the historical power advantages that favored large #CPGs in previous decades,” noting that “#NFT and #metaverse are the next frontiers coming fast” as online innovation for brands continues to accelerate. Reached for comment, Foraker said the company is interested in working within Web3 and is currently looking for opportunities, but has no specific plans at this time.
- CBD brand House of Wise opened bidding this week on an auction for a single “420 1/1 Justice For All” NFT, with bidding set to close at 4:20 p.m. EDT today. Proceeds from the sale will go to The Last Prisoner Project’s Family Support Fund, which helps families who have been impacted by unjust cannabis-related convictions. The NFT was created by Emily Eizen, a Los Angeles-based artist and cannabis industry activist. The auction winner will also receive a box of limited-edition Justice For All CBD Gummy samples, House of Wise Sleep Drops, and House of Wise Stress Drops.
- Functional beverage startup Perfy has released the first in a series of brand-promoting animated shorts featuring founder Vasa Martinez’s “Doodle #3966” NFT. On LinkedIn, Martinez said the series was to promote an upcoming limited-edition flavor launch and also bring the brand closer to web3 and metaverse-themed content.