Care Bears’ collaboration with technology company Recur, which designs and develops NFT experiences, signifies the brand’s efforts to stay relevant in the public eye as new concepts are introduced while still holding tight to its founding traits that older generations have grown to love.
The brand appears be trying to encapsulate its positioning around togetherness with its approach to the metaverse.
Care Bear fans can purchase NFTs of the original ten bears that were the brand’s claim to fame in the ’80s. The collectible tokens allow users to enter Care Bears Forever, a community-focused metaverse experience where users can complete challenges and obtain mystery chest NFTs, but only through real-time collaboration. To unlock a mystery chest, users must submit their original NFT into a community challenge that will boost the “sharing meter,” and contents will only be revealed once the challenge is completed. Users can also purchase chests from one another.
“Over the last 40 years, Care Bears fans have created an enthusiastic and engaged community that champions sharing, caring, and kindness. Our strong relationship with our global fan base allows us to explore new spaces and we are so pleased to see the positivity surrounding our entry to Web3. This is just the beginning,” said Robert Prinzo, Cloudco Entertainment’s head of global licensing, in the press release.
The Care Bears brand has long taken to the digital space to grow its audience, starting in 1983 with its own TV special. Since then, it has continuously held a TV presence and most recently launched a 48-episode series last year on Cartoon Network and HBO Max. With growing consumer interest in the metaverse, entering this space could present an opportunity for the brand to appeal to younger millennials and Gen Z, who are watching less and less TV.
Other nostalgic brands have taken a similar route. In June, Mattel announced its partnership with Cryptoys to launch Barbie and Hot Wheels-inspired NFTs. Barbie also joined forces with Forever 21 to launch a limited-edition Barbie summer 2022 collection that is available in-store, online and on Roblox.
The partnership with Recur, which also helped launch a Hello Kitty NFT collection, joins several collaborations by Cloudco to celebrate Care Bears’ 40th anniversary, including a partnership with Wet n Wild earlier this year to create a Care Bears-themed collection. The brand has also created additional digital ties in recent years through a partnership with The Sandbox to create the virtual Care-a-Lot Kingdom, which now includes a voxelized Care Bears NFT collection that can be used in gameplay, according to a statement from The Sandbox.