Vending machines typically dispense refreshments. You’ve probably also seen them dispensing skincare products, coloured contact lenses, and even flowers.
Over the Malaysia Day weekend, vending machine company, ATLAS Vending (ATLAS), set up NFT vending machines at REXKL. They feature NFT artworks by 13 artists, representing the 13 Malaysian states they came from, and follow the theme of our local culture.
Vending NFTs and national pride
With 300 NFTs up for grabs from now till December 16, some of the artists featured include RoachPunk from Selangor, Pelempunk from Penang, Aku Napie from Perlis, Bree_Young from Sabah, and Hi Friend from Kedah.
Inside the vending machine, there are boxes containing unique QR codes leading users to the NFT, which are dispensed randomly upon purchase.
Buying the NFT requires you to set up a MetaMask wallet. Each NFT is worth RM59, and customers can pay via e-wallet, credit, or debit card.
Once the box is dispensed, they can scan the QR code through MetaMask, and the artwork can be viewed on OpenSea.
While the purpose of these minted NFTs is for collecting, holders who choose to flip them can do so at their chosen crypto value.
This concept is certainly still unique in Malaysia, but it’s worth noting that it has been done overseas by others before, with NFT vending machines existing in New York and Tokyo, to name a few.
An easy introduction to NFTs for the masses
Other than providing recognition to Malaysian NFT artists, ATLAS believes that these vending machines will give people of all ages easy access to purchasing NFTs.
“It’s more convenient and through cashless payment, they can easily own one. At the same time, this will also give them more exposure and understanding of NFTs,” shared Kalithasan Sothinathan, ATLAS’s senior sales and marketing manager.
Additionally, ATLAS intends to demonstrate how flexible its vending machines can be.
“Apart from the traditional bottle and can or hot and cold machines, we [have] introduced Braille-assisted machines, wheelchair-friendly machines, automated sampling machines, newspaper vending machines, and now NFT vending machines,” added Kalithasan.
Last year, the vending machine company also rolled out an initiative to boost the visibility and sales of local SMEs.
Small businesses that suffered the effects of the pandemic were provided with rent-free vending machines that included free refilling services for a period of three months.
Riding on the campaign’s success, ATLAS found the growing NFT ecosystem an opportunity to collaborate with local artists, giving them much-needed on-the-ground exposure while driving the adoption of the Web3 space.
ATLAS implemented a profit-sharing model for its NFT vending machines, where the total sales generated by these NFTs will be shared among all artists involved in this project.
Speaking to Vulcan Post, ATLAS stated that the NFT vending machine has led them to further opportunities, with prospective clients enquiring about the rental of these machines.
The team also shared that they may work with the NFT artists to place the vending machines in their home states. Through this project, NFTs could possibly be made more accessible and drive wider adoption among those who may just be curious, or serious collectors alike.
Though these NFT vending machines make the purchasing process easier, a challenge still remains when it comes to lowering the barriers to entry.
If most people are anything like me, they may not want to download a whole new app and sign up for an account on it, only to use it once.
MetaMask is also not something you can simply “Sign in with Facebook” for either, and it does take time to register, with a waiting time to get verified (if I recall correctly from my experience).
More education and active awareness campaigns will likely need to be held to truly drive lasting adoption of NFTs and Web3 technologies, but ATLAS has pushed the envelope in its way.
Featured Image Credit: Kalithasan Sothinathan, Senior Manager, Marketing & Ancillary Sales of ATLAS Vending