As investor excitement around non-fungible tokens (NFTs) continues unabated, these crypto assets have skyrocketed in price and popularity. This week, digital artist Beeple made an eye-watering $69.3 million at auction, the largest single NFT sale to date.
For those who don’t know, NFTs are like blockchain trading cards, confirming that an individual owns the original, authenticated copy of a digital file, like a JPEG or an MP3. Some of these NFTs come with smart contracts that give their owners real world perks, whether that’s input on team jerseys or lifelong concert tickets.
Here are eight of the hottest NFT sales of the past week.
Beeple: ‘The First 5,000 Days’
Digital artist Beeple might not have been the first artist to mint an NFT, but his work is highly emblematic of the current era of NFT hype. Beeple’s digital artworks are freely available online yet, even prior to this sale, fetch millions of dollars at auction.
Bidding for “The First 5,000 Days” started at just $100, but dramatically escalated over the course of the week. Per ARTNews, last Friday the bidding was at $4 million. At the close of the auction, prices jumped from $37.5 million to the hammer price of $60 million, less fees and taxes.
The NFT was purchased by notable cryptocurrency investor Metakovan, an early adopter of NFT art. Metakovan previously purchased a virtual car for more than $100,000 in November, and cofounded an NFT investing fund called Metapurse.
Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) and Square (NYSE:SQ) CEO Jack Dorsey put his first tweet up for sale as an NFT via the platform Valuables. He announced the sale by tweeting a link on Friday, March 5. By the evening of March 6, bidding had climbed to $2.5 million.
The bidding for this NFT will close on March 21, 2021, the 15-year anniversary of the tweet. Dorsey has said the proceeds will be converted to Bitcoin (CCC:BTC-USD) and donated to Give Directly’s Africa Fund.
Steve Aoki and Anthony Tudisco
As we reported here on InvestorPlace earlier in the week, American electronic musician Steve Aoki sold a series of NFTs this week in collaboration with digital artist Anthony Tudisco. Those NFTs included music from Aoki and 3D virtual characters by Tudisco.
Bidding on a 1-of-1 NFT from that sale closed on Monday evening, with a winning bid of $888,888.88. That’s a big jump from the highest bids of approximately $151,000 on Monday afternoon.
If for some reason, living through the 2020 election wasn’t enough and you need a souvenir to commemorate it, I might recommend bidding on this surreal NFT created by the Associated Press.
With a mouthful of a title, “The Associated Press calls the 2020 Presidential Election on Blockchain — A View from Outer Space” sold for a little over 100 Ethereum (CCC:ETH-USD), worth approximately $180,000. The artwork commemorates the first time an election was called on the blockchain, and saw bidding surge from less than $1,000 on March 3 to the sale price on March 11.
Sports blog Bleacher Report got in on the NFT craze surrounding the NBA this past weekend, selling digital basketballs designed in collaboration with popular rappers including 2 Chainz and Quavo. That NFT sale netted roughly $810,000 in total income.
Notably, 30 of the 40 basketballs up for sale were purchased by just two users. In many ways, this echoes the culture of artificial scarcity and highly marked up resale prevalent in streetwear and sneaker culture. As NFTs continue to gain traction as an investing asset, these resellers could see big profits. Conversely, should the enthusiasm around NFTs die down, they could be stuck with expensive assets no one wants to buy.
Best known for her work in films such as Mean Girls and The Parent Trap, Lindsey Lohan has released a number of NFTs via Rarible over the past weeks. Her most recent drop has seen bids as high as 24 ETH, worth approximately $44,000.
The tongue-in-cheek pieces depict the actress holding up the Ethereum logo and Lohan on the moon next to a Volkswagen Bug emblazoned with the bitcoin symbol. The actress had multiple sales in February that broke the $50,000 price level.
Lohan has said she will use proceeds from this NFT sale to buy NFTs from other artists.
NBA Top Shot
This was actually a non-sale, but the size of the rejected bid says a lot. Would you pay $100,000 for a digital trading card?
Probably not. But if I told you someone else would pay $1 million for it, you might (assuming you had $100,000 laying around). After all, you’d be crazy to turn down a 900% return on investment. Right?
One man apparently did exactly that this week, rejecting a bid of $1 million on a particularly rare Zion Williamson NFT. As reported by Wall Street Journal this week, NBA Top Shot NFTs have surged in value as more casual basketball fans buy highlights, making some whales very, very wealthy (at least on paper).
Azealia Banks and Ryder Ripps
Last but certainly not least, Brooklyn rapper Azealia Banks and American artist Ryder Ripps released an erotic audio NFT this past weekend. Banks may be familiar to investors due to her involvement in a class-action lawsuit against Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) CEO Elon Musk.
The 24-minute audio album, which comes with a 1-of-1 vinyl pressing and “limitless distribution rights” was put up for sale on Saturday, March 6 with an asking price of 10 ETH. Worth approximately $18,000 at the time of sale, the NFT was promptly bought in a matter of hours.
On the date of publication, Vivian Medithi did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article.