Balmain and SharpEnd Launched NFC Pokémon Tags

IoT For All

Many of us will have nostalgic childhood memories of collecting Pokémon cards purchased for a few pounds from a local shop. But now, Balmain Paris, one of the world’s most renowned Parisian fashion houses, is giving fans a unique chance to once again enjoy their favorite characters by launching the Balmain x Pokémon collaboration, an immersive digital experience enabled through NFC tags and a luxury jacket. To integrate the NFC tags, Balmain has partnered with SharpEnd, the world’s fastest-growing IoT solutions partner, to launch the one-of-a-kind connected moment unifying tech and design excellence.

Pokémon fans will be excited to learn they can get their hands on one of the 15 Balmain x Pokémon limited edition SharpEnd NFC patches available to purchase at nine Balmain boutiques across the US, Europe, and Asia. For a lucky few worldwide, the adventure will provide a rich, gamified user experience within Pokémon UNITE simply by tapping their patch.

The brand partnership is the first to connect a physical touchpoint with digital rewards in the Pokémon UNITE universe. Once purchased, users access the experience by tapping their smartphone onto the patches, unlocking a range of digital content and money-can’t-buy prizes such as VIP tickets to the Balmain Festival in Paris or even early access to the Balmain Fashion Set in Pokémon UNITE. The NFC patches can only be bought in person at Balmain stores.

The showpiece of the collaboration is 20 limited edition Balmain x Pokémon luxury jackets. Each jacket features 15 patches embedded with NFC tags, connecting the Balmain army straight into the Pokémon universe. There are ten bespoke jackets worldwide and ten will be gifted to celebrities across the world.

Headed by visionary creative director Olivier Rousteing, Balmain has adopted innovative NFC technology to deliver an engaging experience to Pokémon fans by linking their luxury products to their digital realm. The unique digital and physical collaboration allows fans to enjoy a hyper-personalized in-game Pokémon-themed experience.

The Balmain x Pokémon collaboration works in the following steps.

  1. Unlock the badge: An NFC tag is found behind the Pokémon on each patch. Users tap their smartphone to ‘Unlock’ it, using iOS or Android, automatically launching their browser to access the Balmain x Pokémon digital experience.

  2. Authentication: The digital experience is launched and users can register to claim the Balmain x Pokémon badge and join the fun.

  3. Unlock the legend: Users can collect all four unique Pokémon patches in their region and gain access to purchase the fifth legendary badge. Only 35 legendary patches are available in Asia, 25 in the US, and just 15 in Europe.

  4. Earn Rewards: Once users enter the experience there is the opportunity to unlock exclusive rewards and prizes. Prizes range from an exclusive Balmain Fashion Set in Pokémon UNITE to VIP tickets to the third edition of the Balmain Paris Festival.

Cameron Worth, CEO and founder of SharpEnd said, “We are delighted to partner with such an illustrious and highly-respected fashion house as Balmain to bring a rich connected experience to market. We are using NFC tags to create unique opportunities for fans to enjoy a gamified experience – helping Balmain to continue to push boundaries and open up new paths for rewarding customers.”

Olivier Rousteing, Creative Director of Balmain, said, “This is the first time Balmain has explored NFC technology and as a luxury brand we are excited for the continued integration of new technologies, offering our customers an engaging, collective experience, making our brand more widely accessible to a larger audience than ever before.”

About SharpEnd

SharpEnd is the world’s fastest-growing Internet of Things partner leading brands spanning the categories of drinks, beauty, fashion, wellness, and FMCG.

Founded in 2015, and with offices in the UK and US, SharpEnd uses technologies such as NFC, QR codes, and Augmented Reality to develop connected packaging, product, and retail experiences for brands powered by the industry standard platform, called, which is currently used in over 130 countries.

SharpEnd’s proprietary platform,, connects billions of products and store touch points across the globe, identifying where and why consumers are interacting and delivering these insights back in real-time dashboards. More information can be found at

About Balmain Paris

More than 75 years ago, when Pierre Balmain first introduced his “New French Style,” it immediately became clear to all that his eponymous house was offering a distinctly fresh, bold, and feminine conception of haute couture, one which broke with many of the well-established conventions of the era. His audaciousness paid off. Pierre Balmain became one of the handful of young French talents who ushered in the mid-century golden age of couture and helped to re-establish Paris as the world’s fashion capital. For more than ten years, Balmain’s Creative Director, Olivier Rousteing, has been inventively building upon Pierre Balmain’s extraordinary legacy, while always remaining true to his determination to design clothes that reflect the way his inclusive, powerful, and global Balmain Army wishes to live today. The result is a unique and instantly recognizable Balmain silhouette, style, and attitude that highlights the singular craftsmanship of the house’s celebrated ateliers, while consistently referencing a rich Parisian heritage. For more information, please visit

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IoT For All
IoT For All
IoT For All is creating resources to enable companies of all sizes to leverage IoT. From technical deep-dives, to IoT ecosystem overviews, to evergreen resources, IoT For All is the best place to keep up with what's going on in IoT.
IoT For All is creating resources to enable companies of all sizes to leverage IoT. From technical deep-dives, to IoT ecosystem overviews, to evergreen resources, IoT For All is the best place to keep up with what's going on in IoT.