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Coachella: A Brand Breakdown

After three long years, Coachella returned with a bang. The stars were out, and big-name brands also established a presence in the desert. Boardroom breaks it down.

Coachella 2022 set the bar high for festival season in Indio, California, over the weekend.

Harry Styles shimmered (and shimmied) in a custom Gucci sequin jumpsuit while debuting two new songs — “Boyfriends” and “Late Night Talking” — from his forthcoming third studio album Harry’s House during his first-ever headlining Coachella set on Friday night.

Billie Eilish took over Saturday night, becoming the youngest-ever headliner since the festival debuted in 1999. (Billie was born in 2001, by the way.) For our purposes, it’s worth noting that the seven-time Grammy winner rocked a pair of all-white PSNY x Nike Air Force 1 High sneakers ahead of her “Mushroom” Air Force 1 silhouette dropping next weekend.

The Weeknd and Swedish House Mafia tag-teamed Sunday’s headline slot — replacing Ye — but before the first weekend came to a close, big-name brand activations took over the desert, too.

Coachella 2022 has 23 brand sponsors, including YouTube as the official livestream partner for music fans unable to attend.

Below, Boardroom highlights eight brands who established a presence and enhanced the experience for those who were camped out at Coachella.

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ABSOLUT

Absolut Vodka used Coachella to roll out Absolut.Land, a “Coachella-inspired pop-up experience” with “a festival-appropriate collection of digital fashion wearables,” as reported by Forbes.

There was an IRL vibe to go along with a presence in Decentraland:

The metaverse is a nice touch, but Absolut has been the official vodka of Coachella for the last 10 years. The only thing missing was Lizzo, who was busy handling double duty on Saturday Night Live, as she created Absolut Juice with the brand in August 2019.

American Express

Billie Eilish’s impact cannot be contained to a stage, even one as large as the main Coachella Stage.

American Express, one of the festival’s sponsors, partnered with Bravado and added a pop-up shop to its on-site Amex Lounge. There, American Express card members had access to limited edition merchandise from Eilish and Conan Gray, who made his Coachella debut earlier Saturday.

Other benefits for card members included “Sweet Treat Saturday,” access to relax at a wellness retreat on Sunday, and one free ferris wheel ride.

BMW

BMW’s “Road to Coachella” campaign starred Doja Cat as she prepared to make her debut solo performance at the festival:

The luxury vehicle company continued to support Doja as her set drew closer:

“Road to Coachella” is an ongoing BMW campaign, and the last featured artist was Khalid in 2019.

BMW chose the right artist to revive the campaign with this year, as Doja was touted for the rap acumen on display during her set by the likes of IDK and Wale:

BMW isn’t the only brand attracted to Doja lately. The Monday after the Planet Her star claimed her first-ever Grammy earlier this month, JBL unveiled her as its newest brand ambassador.

InBetweeners

InBetweeners took the NFT space by storm in December. Created by Gianpiero D’Alessandro and Pasquale “Pavi” V. D’Avino, the collection racked up $18.6 million in transactions as of late February.

The instantaneous popularity has to be attributed at least in part to Justin Bieber’s support, as adorable as the digital teddy bears are on their own.

At Coachella, InBetweeners increased its footing in the music space with two afterparties in partnership with The h.wood Group and Kendall Jenner’s 818 tequila.

Bieber joined Daniel Caesar on Friday night to perform their Grammy-nominated single “Peaches,” and then he and his wife, Hailey Bieber, hit the InBetweeners event, where they danced with Jenner while Zack Bia DJed.

The next night’s InBetweeners afterparty saw Travis Scott perform. Scott was removed from the official Coachella lineup in December after a crowd surge at his November Astroworld Festival in Houston killed 10 people and injured many more.

Liquid I.V.

Who is hotter than Jack Harlow right now?

The Louisville rapper earned his first solo No. 1 on Billboard ‘s coveted Hot 100 singles chart with “First Class” on Monday, and the feat comes after Harlow spent the weekend helping Liquid I.V. cool festivalgoers down with its House of Hydration launch on Saturday.

Harlow, MAAD and Saweetie each performed, which was just an appetizer for what Harlow had in store later in the weekend.

And in the theme of foreshadowing, Liquid I.V. will follow up its Coachella debut with a Hydration Saloon at Stagecoach during the weekend of April 29.

New Balance

Jaden Smith didn’t perform at Coachella, but he spent his break from opening on Bieber’s Justice World Tour on festival grounds with a MSFTS pop-up for his Trippy Summer collection in conjunction with New Balance and Samsung.

The pop-up gave attendees the first look at the newest colorway for the New Balance Vision Racer sneaker within the Sunset Chaser pack.

Jaden was introduced as a New Balance brand ambassador in July 2019, and by July 2020, his Vision Racer silhouette arrived.

MSFTS is the 23-year-old multi-hyphenate talent’s skate and streetwear brand that he oversees with his sister, Willow, and brothers Moises Arias and Mateo “Téo” Arias.

Ray-Ban

Ray-Ban unleashed limited festival edition Stories smart glasses for anybody who came to visit at Coachella, promising a “journey through a mystic Mojave desert” and “an immersive dreamscape of energized sound, light and color:”

TikToker and model Remi Bader documented her experience for those curiously following online:

Actress and Grammy-nominated R&B singer-songwriter Chloe Bailey (also known as Chlöe) and Euphoria breakout star Angus Cloud rocked pairs when stopping by the tent:

The Ray-Ban Stories smart glasses collection was introduced last fall with Facebook and Luxottica, boasting technology that allows wearers to take photos or record videos.

Revolve

As teased above, Jack Harlow was back on stage for day two of Revolve Festival on Sunday:

Revolve put on the festival within the festival — a hot spot for some of the industry’s hottest artists and their fans, such as Chloe x Halle, Post Malone, BIA, and Quavo. Film and television stars such as Timothée Chalamet (!) and Euphoria‘s Sydney Sweeney and Storm Reid got in on the fun, too.

Revolve Festival’s in-house activations included Jenner’s 818 tequila, a Venmo swing ride with funds supporting Girls Inc., and the Spotify K-Pop Cafe.

Coachella will ramp up again next weekend (April 22-24) at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, California.

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