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McCann Shanghai and the North Face China launch digital collectible

SHANGHAI, CHINA — Activewear and sports gear brand The North Face has partnered with creative agency McCann Shanghai to launch three unique NFTs on Tmall. As a trendy way of digital socializing amongst young consumers, NFTs are an innovative brand asset that brings consumers a unique brand experience.

How Chu, Executive Creative Director of McCann Shanghai, said, “Many people think that NFTs are just a simple product designed for display. But in fact, every single touch point can become a platform for brands to engage with consumers.”

The McCann Shanghai team designed three NFTs based on the relevant product functions, product history, weather, and terrain conditions corresponding to each product.


Due to Chinese regulatory policy, NFTs can’t be purchased directly. Instead, when people buy a specific The North Face item, they will earn the matching NFT.

To raise awareness, The North Face launched several teaser posters on social media to attract people racing to earn the NFT once it launches, and 5,000 NFTs were collected in just one week! Each NFT also comes with a unique digital certificate, making this an exclusive brand experience for consumers.

“We are very excited to help release TNF’s very first NFT, building off the in-depth research we have conducted on China’s Metaverse market. We believe that NFT is not only fashionable at this moment, but will also have huge potential in the future,” said Shu Wu, Managing Director of McCann China. “From trail running to mountain climbing, from mountains to cities, we believe that consumers can feel more through these NFTs and engage deeper with the ‘never stop exploring’ spirit of The North Face.”

#1 TNF100 Trail Shoe

The TNF100 cross-country race has a long-standing reputation among Chinese runners. As the race organizer, The North Face spoke to runners and produced a list of “100 Reasons to Return to the Mountains” based on real answers from 100 runners. The text for each reason was formatted into a finishing line design and these were then all woven together to become an especially meaningful trailer shoe.

This specific NFT captures the moment when the shoe breaks through the bottom plate of the collection and steps into the real terrain of Yunnan.

#2 TNF Summit Series

The second NFT is TNF Summit Series, a set of mountaineering clothing designed for professional mountaineers, to cope with extreme weather conditions.

In this 15-second video, set in the mountains, every time the peak gets higher, the terrain will change accordingly, and one additional layer of clothing is added – from the base layer, to the middle layer, and then to the outer layer. The video not just introduces the essentials of dressing appropriately under different weather and terrain conditions, but also illustrates that The North Face products “understand every aspect of the mountain.”

#3 TNF NUPTSE Series

The third NFT is the classic TNF NUPTSE Series, the jacket originally launched in 1992, which became popular in cities and with Hip-Hop trendsetters of the time.

In the design of this NFT, the McCann team pays tribute to New York from 30 years ago, by including many iconic elements such as arcade games, Times Square building, Walkman, subway token, and graffiti. The concept is that as cities and eras change, NUPTSE classic down jackets are also constantly refreshed in design and color patterns.

“We hope that these digital collectibles convey the role of The North Face in people’s lives – when you are willing to explore the world, be it in mountains or cities, TNF will accompany you every step of the way,” commented Benson Pang, Associate Creative Director, McCann Shanghai.

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