Mastercard is harnessing Web3 in an effort to support up-and-coming musical artists. Together with Polygon blockchain it has announced the launch of a Web3 musicians program which aims to teach emerging artists how to own and monetise their content using blockchain technology. Mastercard will connect selected artists from around the world with notable mentors and a dynamic fanbase as they learn and create in Web3. The program will start with 5 emerging artists and culminate later in 2023 with a livestreamed artist showcase. At the moment, artists that wish to participate in the accelerator can subscribe to the program’s updates on the official website.
The accelerator will provide artists access to Web3 innovators and music industry experts. These tutors will guide the musicians through the path of Web3, help them get necessary blockchain-related skills, and learn how to use Web3 tools. During the acceleration program, artists will discover how to develop a Web3 community, mint an NFT, and represent their works in virtual worlds, such as the metaverse.
The companies will also release limited-edition Mastercard Music Pass NFTs. The tokens will grant holders access to exclusive education material, web3 music tools, and digital as well as physical experiences.
“Web3 has the potential to empower a new type of artist that can grow a fanbase, make a living, and introduce novel mediums for self-expression and connection on their own terms. The Mastercard Artist Accelerator not only shows the power of brands embracing this new space, it provides tools that can educate consumers on how to participate. This is an important step forward in opening up the benefits of Web3 to more people,” said Ryan Wyatt, CEO of Polygon Studios.
This isn’t Mastercard’s first foray into crypto and Web3. In January 2022 Mastercard joined forces with Coinbase to enable using Mastercard for purchasing NFTs on Coinbase's NFT marketplace. In June 2022, Mastercard partnered with a number of platforms, including Immutable X, The Sandbox, and MoonPay, to allow its 2.9 billion cardholders the ability to buy NFTs without first purchasing cryptocurrencies. In October Mastercard started working with Paxos to allow banks to offer cryptocurrency trading and related services to their customers.
Also, last year several other big companies introduced their Web3-themed accelerator programs. In October, a well-known venture fund Andreessen Horowitz announced its Crypto Startup School. The program focuses on different steps of building a crypto startup, from protocol design to go-to-market. The Walt Disney Company also launched its themed accelerator. The program is focused on immersive experiences and advanced technologies, such as AR, NFTs, and AI.
We continue to observe.