Today in The Connected Economy: Twitter Debuts Branded Likes; Facebook Pilots NFTs

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Today in the connected economy, Twitter debuts its Branded Likes feature for advertisers with audiences in the U.S, U.K., Japan and Saudi Arabia.

Also, Facebook launches a NFT pilot with Ethereum and Polygon, and German security technology firm Giesecke+Devrient (G+D) purchases the payment and identity solutions business of Valid USA.

Twitter Launches Branded Likes

Twitter is rolling out Branded Likes to all managed advertisers reaching consumers in the U.S., U.K., Saudi Arabia and Japan.

“Expanding Twitter as a creative canvas for brands means improving the reach and efficiency of some of our core brand solutions — like Takeover Ads — and introducing new formats that drive business results and help brands tell richer stories,” the platform said on its blog.

Branded Likes let advertisers turn Twitter’s Like button into a custom animation. The function is available as an add-on to the platform’s Timeline Takeover offering, an ad placement designed to make sure a brand’s ad is the first ad to show up when a user logs onto Twitter for the day.

Facebook Pilots Ethereum, Polygon NFTs with Select Creators

Meta is piloting non-fungible tokens (NFTs) with Ethereum and Polygon for some U.S. creators on Facebook.

The move comes in the wake of the social media giant’s NFT support for select creators on Instagram in May. Last week, Meta expanded its Instagram NFT pilot to allow more creators around the world to display their NFTs.

The Facebook trial, which will soon include Solana and Flow, is similar to Instagram’s initial pilot and lets creators display NFTs on their profiles under a new tab. And like Instagram, the art will appear under a “digital collectibles” label.

Mollie and xentral Announce Collaboration

Dutch payment service provider Mollie’s said its services will be integrated into German enterprise resources planning platform provider xentral’s under a new collaboration.

The companies said the arrangement is designed to give small- to medium-sized eCommerce businesses “smoother” payment and order-management services.

“Automated processes between eCommerce platforms, warehouses and accounting systems have long been standard. That’s why it’s important to use a payment service provider (PSP) that is also directly integrated with an ERP system,” said Annett Polaszewski-Plath, a managing director at Mollie.

Security Firm G+D Buys Valid’s Payment, ID Business

Munich-based security technology firm Giesecke+Devrient (G+D) is acquiring the payment and identity solutions business Valid USA.

“With this step, G+D aims to accelerate growth in the U.S., one of the world’s largest payment and identity markets,” the company said in a news release. “G+D customers will benefit from the enlarged business size in the face of persistent industry-wide supply chain challenges.”

The acquisition includes three of Valid’s American manufacturing facilities — two in Illinois, and one in Indiana — which employ more than 400 people.