Bored Ape Yacht Club creators buy up rival token collections to become an even bigger NFT powerhouse

CryptoPunks’ average selling price is about $177,420, per DappRadar, while Meebits sell for an average of $16,100. So the deal is likely worth more than $100 million, just considering the price of the valuable NFTs Yuga received. Yuga will also own the CryptoPunks and Meebit brands and logos, which it could potentially use in marketing and merchandising.

The expectation is that Yuga — known as one of the savviest marketers of NFT brands — could help build CryptoPunks and Meebits into even bigger brands, perhaps with some of the characters debuting in games or on luxury goods. Yuga recently struck a deal with Animoca Brands to develop a game using BAYC characters. Owners of BAYC get access to exclusive merchandise and exclusive events.

“What we don’t plan to do is shoehorn these NFT collections into the ‘club’ model we’ve developed for BAYC,” Yuga’s team said in a blog post. “We’re not in a rush here. We’ll be listening to the community before we decide what comes next.”

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In some cases, as with CryptoPunks or Bored Apes, ownership can lead to more career opportunities or respect online than in the physical world. It can be viewed as a sort of “flex,” as Gmoney, a notable NFT collector and figure within the space, calls it. That’s why he spent six figures on his CryptoPunk NFT No. 8219, he tweeted in January 2021. “With a NFT, by posting it as my avatar on Twitter and Discord, I can quickly ‘flex’ with a picture.” 

“Ownership and authenticity can be quickly verified online,” Gmoney said. “It has the same effect as wearing that Rolex in real life, but digitally.”

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Mahtab could relate: When buying his BAYC NFT, “I was struggling to plan my future and did not know how I would meet rent, [and] this NFT paved the way for me for so many opportunities in the digital and real world,” he said. 

‘It truly feels like being in a very cool club’

Nathan Head, owner of BAYC No. 7865, calls his NFT “the best investment I have ever made in my life.

“I honestly don’t know if I would ever sell my Ape, even

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As part of the acquisition, Yuga said it will transfer commercial and exclusive licensing rights to individual NFT holders for free. 

Meebits is the top NFT collection by lifetime volume, having facilitated $7.54 billion in sales, per tracker DappRadar. CryptoPunks comes in third, with $4.2 billion in lifetime sales, while BAYC is in fifth place at $1.4 billion, per DappRadar.

The acquisition comes as the NFT market cools, with total daily sales nosediving in recent weeks and average selling price declining as well. Concerns about an easing of pandemic-era stimulus and geopolitical tensions have weighed on the crypto market.

Yuga was founded in 2021 by four friends, who decided to build a community around ape NFTs, according to the company. 

“To us, NFTs are not about art or even money, they’re about culture,” Yuga Labs said in a recent emailed response. “We believe NFTs are a key that can open the door to incredible utility and a community of people you might not have met otherwise, who are pushing out the frontier of the internet.”

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