A woman has joined the latest NFT investment craze and paid £18K for a digital image of 'Bored Ape' - which she claims has now doubled in value.
Becks Perfect, founder of Nifty World NFT, bought a Mutant Ape Yacht Club NFT in early November for £18K - that she says is now worth £37,708.
These are the second generation Ape NFTs which, if they track the way the originals did, investors hope could be worth a fortune one day.
Just 30 days ago, an original Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT (of which there are only 10,000 in existence) went on sale for £217,186.25.
The most expensive Bored Ape #2078 sold for £2,431,900.
The Bored Ape Yacht Club is seen as the pioneer for utility-based NFTs.
If you buy one of the ape images, you will be joining celebrities such as Jimmy Falon, Eminem, DJ Khaled and Steve Aoki, who too have jumped on the NFT craze.
Once you own an ape, you have the commercial rights to the image.
Becks, founder of the educational YouTube channel and Metaverse Media Company Nifty World NFT, said: “Anyone that now owns an original Bored Ape has made a solid investment. You cannot really buy one for less than $240,000 right now.”
NFTs (Non Fungible Tokens) come in two forms, one off originals, or collections of copies that are grouped together into projects.
These projects (most commonly referred to as PFP 'profile picture project' NFTs) can offer something called a ‘Utility Function’, which are essentially benefits that someone has access to when they own a piece.
Once you buy a Bored Ape for example, you then are automatically a member of the Bored Ape Yacht Club, which can best be described as an Exclusive Members Club.
Once a member, you can then receive exclusive benefits, such as exclusive merchandise, access to events, exclusive access to new NFTs that may be released in the future, and commercial rights to your NFT.
The creators of the Bored Ape Yacht Club have developed a roadmap, or ‘goalposts’ as they call them - once they hit a target sell through percentage, they then realise the goal.
For example, once they sold 60% of their NFT apes, the ‘Member-Exclusive Merch Store’ was unlocked, this featured limited edited tees, hoodies and other ‘goodies’.
On Friday 30th April, 2021, 10,000 generative apes were sold for around $192 each.
Six months later, the cost of one of these apes alone went for a minimum if $200,000. The collection of 101 of these apes sold at Sotherby’s Auction House for $24 million.
The Non-Fungible part is the most important. It essentially means something is one-of-a-kind. It has unique properties that cannot be interchanged with anything else.
A token is a digital representation of ownership, it is something that can be bought and sold.
The most popular form in which NFTs are being traded in are digital images. These include pieces of art, profile pictures, or something that resembles a trading card (like Pokémon cards we all used to trade back in the day.)
NFTs are either grouped together into projects, for example the Bored Ape Yacht Club, a collection that acts as a ‘club’ with ‘members’ OR one-off-one NFTs.
The best example of one-of-one NFTs can be explained by Damien Hirst.
The artist released 10,000 individual NFTs for £2,000 per piece. These are Damien Hirst originals - so if you buy one, you own a genuine Damien Hirst.
There is a scarcity on the numbers sold. Once the images have sold out, there are no any more. Because there is scarcity, demand goes up and the price increases.
However, people create fakes. Sometimes it is hard to prove what you have. A real-life Damien Hurst art piece? How do you really know it is authentic and the ‘real deal’?
Well, you don’t have this problem with NFTs because of something called Block Chain Technology.
When you buy an NFT, you receive a unique code, which allows you to trace back to where the NFT originally came from. This represents a digital proof of ownership.
Becks looks at NFTs from “an investment point of view.”
She said: “The most important thing for me is the exclusive access that comes with the NFT.
“I am now part of the most exclusive members club in the NFT space.
“The Bored Ape Yacht Club is like the Apple or the Nike. They are a leader in the market.”
There is something else you need to know. There will only ever be 10,000 Bored Apes (the original Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs), and 20,000 Mutant Apes (the 2nd generation Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs).
Bored Ape Yacht Club was launched in late April, 2021, by a team of four pseudonymous developers: Gargamel, Gordon Goner, Emperor Tomato Ketchup and No Sass.
A large part of their project’s roadmap has already been completed, but part of the reasons for which BAYC became so popular is the constant team effort to discover new benefits for its members.
When asked why Becks made the purchase in the first place, she explained: "I had been following the BAYC for a while, understood what impact they were making in the NFT community, and bought in.
"But it was when Adidas Originals partnered with the BAYC I knew this brand was going to be taken to a whole new level."
She describes the process as a “cultural phenomenon".
Becks said: “There are thousands of projects out there. To succeed in the NFT world, you have to firstly believe in the project and what it stands for and wants to achieve.
"Secondly know they are genuine and will deliver.”
It all seems wonderful for those that can afford the investment. However, there lies an underlying irony.
These ‘immaterial’ tokens that do not exist in real-life, only in the digital world and are having deeply real world effects that are destroying our planet.
Ethereum, the platform in which the Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs exist, currently has an annual carbon footprint of 51.1Mt of CO2 - the same as the entire country of Sweden, according to DigiConomist.
Becks said: “It is estimated that every time an NFT is sold, the carbon footprint is 14 TIMES the impact than if you had posted a real-life painting on a canvas to someone.
“From an NFT community perspective, there is an awareness and consciousness about the energy being used, creators are stating about how they're going to offset their footprint and for investors it’s about making strategic purchases and thinking about whether you really need to buy it and make a transaction in the first place.”