Rémy Martin has just added high-security NFC (near field communication) technology to a new range of its fine champagne cognac, making it the first wine and spirits brand to do so.
Some people say technology and alcohol doesn’t mix – well it’s certainly true if you intend to pour your strong spirit onto your non-resistant mobile device, for example – but Rémy Martin’s new Rémy Martin Club Connected Bottle will contain an NFC chip that provides an integrated secure authentication and opening detection technology, and a consumer engagement program that allows the brand to maintain contact with the consumer long after their purchase.
Now, in most cases that level of brand-consumer interaction can seem somewhat spooky; for its initial launch market of China, however, this can make some sense. Like most other industries, the spirits industry in China is rife with counterfeiting and awash with reports of counterfeiters refilling authentic bottles with fake spirit.There’s also a thriving grey market, where spirits meant for other markets somehow making their way to its shores.
The Rémy Martin Club Connected Bottle, with its tamper-proof technology developed by Selinko – better known for making bank-level authentication solutions, looks perfect to deal with such problems. Aside from the consumers knowing that their purchase is authentic and have not been tampered with – the lack of an NFC tag, or a compromised one, is a dead giveaway – Rémy Martin themselves can track exactly where a bottle of the Club Connected Bottle have been opened and consumed.
For technology geeks, the high-security NFC chip is rated and certified ANSSI – EAL4+; for the rest of us less enlightened about such things, that’s a similar level of security found in electronic passports or bankcards.
Simply tapping the top of the bottle using the Rémy Martin mobile application will instantly show if the bottle is genuine and sealed, or if it has been resealed. Once the consumer opens his or her bottle, the NFC integrated tag will emit a different signal, indicating the change from “sealed” to “opened”. The consumer is also eligible to earn points towards the Rémy Martin engagement program when tapping the bottle again.
“Not only does the Rémy Martin Club Connected Bottle guarantee the authenticity of the product, but also, and this is the exciting innovation, it allows us to communicate directly with our consumers who like and use our products. Rewards, events, special offers: our communication can now be completely aligned with our clients’ preferences for an optimal relevancy,” explains Augustin Depardon, Rémy Martin Executive Director.
“As the world is becoming connected, our consumers are expecting their favorite brands to do more than deliver the finest spirits: they want to have a direct connection with these brands, and a direct engagement,” adds Depardon.
We’re not quite sure yet if the Rémy Martin Club Connected Bottle will enter our market; if so don’t be surprised when you espy someone tapping the top of their cognac bottle with their mobile phone at your nearest swanky bar. They’re just engaging in some brand interaction via sexy new technology.