Mastercard announced Friday at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Nevada, that it will use the Polygon blockchain to launch its Mastercard Artist Accelerator.
The program is designed to help musical artists learn how to expand their brands through minting NFTs, building an online presence, and establishing a community. While Mastercard has not yet said who will participate in the accelerator, the company said the accelerator will end later this year with a live-streamed artist showcase.
Mastercard says the aim is to create a space for music content creation, collaboration, and ownership, using the accelerator to connect artists worldwide with mentors in Web3.
“Kicking off in spring 2023, the Mastercard Artist Accelerator will prepare five emerging artists—such as musicians, DJs, producers—with the tools, skills, and access to forge their own musical paths in the digital economy,” Mastercard said in a press release.
According to Mastercard, the accelerator will include a limited edition NFT called “The Mastercard Music Pass,” which the company says will give holders access to exclusive music educational materials, unique resources, and other physical and digital experiences.
NFTs are blockchain-based tokens linked to digital and physical content, providing proof of ownership, authenticity, or membership in a group. NFTs have also been a lucrative side project for musicians in the past.
In March 2021, singer and songwriter Grimes sold a collection of visual art for over $6 million. That same month, EDM musician, 3LAU, made $11 million by selling an album as 33 individual NFTs. DJ Steve Aoki famously said in February of last year that he made more money from NFTs than from 10 years of advances from his music.