Sure, the NFT market has been called a bubble. But now Macy’s has brought balloons to the party, adding more hot air to the gaggle of corporate brands minting NFTs.

The department store behind the eponymous Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York is giving away 9,500 Ethereum NFTs to celebrate its 95th year of presenting the event. Ten “ultra rare” versions of the NFTs are being auctioned and have already generated $41,700 in bids.

Macy’s said it will begin giving away the free NFTs on Thursday, Nov. 25 at 10 a.m. EST. 

NFTs are tokens that represent ownership rights over digital items, such as image or music files. The Macy’s NFTs, Ethereum-based tokens on the Polygon network, donate 10% of every secondary market sale to the Make-A-Wish Foundation. It’s the same as when artists set up their NFTs to send them a commission each time their art resells. Meanwhile, all of the proceeds from the ultra rare collection will go to the foundation. 


The NFT collection is a small concession relative to what shareholder NuOrion Advisors demanded earlier this month. In a letter to the retailer, firm managing member Guy Phillips wrote that the company needs to distinguish itself as a “World-Class New Age retailer.”

“In addition,” he writes, “Macy’s should announce immediately that they are partnering with various Crypto platforms to allow digital payments. Macy’s can be one of the first major retailers to accept Crypto, joining companies like Starbucks and Whole Foods.”

Macy’s NFT debut comes after many, many other brands have taken a shot at upping engagement with digital collectibles. Most have designed their NFTs to automatically transfer some portion of sales to a charity. And all of them have been met with mixed results.

After introducing its 1 Byte Pizza at about $0.18–to match the price of an actual bite of pizza–Pizza Hut’s NFT last sold for 7 ETH. It’s since been listed for nearly 10 times that price, at 75 ETH, or $325,000 using today’s price.


Meanwhile, a number of the NFT dolls minted by MGA Entertainment’s Bratz brand have never been sold after debuting last December. The Charmin NFT(P) collectibles–the art which merges distressed images of toilet paper with the poop emoji and the bear family from the brand’s commercials–have also received a lackluster reception. 

But there has been at least one significant win in the category. Visa paid 50 ETH (about $165,000 at the time) to add CryptoPunk #7610 to its “collection of historic commerce artifacts.” Following the purchase, the lowest price commanded by NFTs in the collection has hovered around 100 ETH, or around $400,000, and many of them command prices in the millions. 

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