Barbie Enters the Blockchain World: Exploring the Pros and Cons of NFTs for Classic Toys

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Barbie, the iconic toy figure that has represented over 250 careers since its launch in 1959, is now stepping into the world of blockchain. Mattel, the maker of Barbie, has collaborated with the women-led Web3 brand Boss Beauties in launching an on-chain virtual collection known as Boss Beauties x Barbie. The collection features NFTs made in the signature style of Boss Beauties, honoring the various professional incarnations of the famous doll.

These NFTs are hosted on the NFT-centric Flow blockchain, which is responsible for NBA Top Shot, and are available in packs of four priced at $25 each. Interestingly, they cannot be bought using cryptocurrency. Mattel believes that by offering a low price point and an easy-to-use check-out process, they are lowering the barrier to entry for enthusiastic Barbie fans. Meanwhile, Boss Beauties aims to onboard the next 1 million women and girls into the Web3 world through this partnership.

The Boss Beauties x Barbie virtual collectibles encompass a wide range of rarity levels that grant various digital and real-world benefits. For instance, “Ultra Rare” NFTs, which make up only 0.67% of the supply, entitle holders to a limited edition “Career of the Year” Barbie doll set. “Exclusive” NFTs, accounting for 0.47% of the cards, provide a ticket to the immersive “World of Barbie” exhibition, currently taking place in Los Angeles.

Additional perks yet to be divulged include access to virtual Career Conversations with prominent women professionals, physical goods made available to cardholders, and a surprise virtual collectible with an exclusive career trait, to be revealed in July. This coincides with the premiere of the Warner Bros. Barbie film, starring Margot Robbie.

While this is not Mattel’s first venture into the Web3 space, their approach to branding has shifted. Previously, they released a range of Cryptoys last summer and a line of Barbie NFTs in collaboration with the French fashion house Balmain. This time, however, the Boss Beauties x Barbie collection avoids directly referencing NFTs and is described exclusively as virtual collectibles.

Although Mattel’s interest in incorporating blockchain-based products into its brands remains evident, its changing strategy might reflect skepticism and/or strategic thinking towards the use of Web3 terminology. Regardless, the Boss Beauties x Barbie collection is an innovative way of bridging the worlds of traditional toys and blockchain technology, ultimately providing fans with unique experiences and collectibles.

Source: Decrypt

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