Chances are you’ve come across the news that Eminem purchased an NFT of the so-called “Bored Apes” for $450,000 and then set the image as his profile picture (go check out his Instagram account). Nicknamed “EminApe”, given the resemblance to the rapper from Detroit, this NFT is just one of the many digital collectibles in limited series children of the Bored Ape Yacht Club project that are having a huge success and virality producing an unprecedented turnover (on the OpenSea platform, the largest marketplace for NFT, has exceeded one billion dollars).
But what are these “Bored Apes” and what is the Bored Ape Yacht Club?
Visualizza questo post su Instagram
Among other things 2021 has bequeathed us is the explosion of NFTs (non-fungible tokens), a particular type of cryptographic token – a sort of certificate of authenticity – that ensures the uniqueness and ownership of certain digital works. In this elitist welter of virtual works of art sold at very high prices stand out the “Bored Ape” (soon they will also be the protagonists of a collaboration with adidas, see post above), illustrations that represent bored apes, each one different from the other and made by the so-called Bored Ape Yacht Club, a project founded by two 30-year-old “literary nerds” – so they called themselves – whose identity is hidden behind two pseudonyms, Gargamel and Gordon Goner. Before the Bored Ape Yacht Club Gargamel was an editor and writer while Gordon Goner was ready to attend a course of study on art but in the end, due to an illness that has confined him at home, he decided to devote himself to day trading cryptocurrencies.
Once the decision was made to enter the world of collectible NFTs, the choice of subject matter was not easy, but in the end they agreed on apes (both of them had a particular passion for these primates) but they had to have a bored attitude. The artistic part was delegated to an algorithm that randomly originated the digital apes, while the duo put into action the plan to create an exclusive club formed by the owners of the digital illustrations.
In April 2021 the two launched the first batch of Bored Ape composed of ten thousand illustrations all different and all sold within the first 24 hours for $200 each earning $2 million. But this is just the beginning.
The concept of the exclusive club thought by Goner and Gargamel becomes reality almost immediately. The owners of the Bored Ape began to replace their profile picture (at first Twitter but then also Instagram) with the ape purchased, a sort of sign of recognition that automatically led buyers to discuss with each other and form relationships, a sort of status symbol that determined a precise belonging.
From that point forward, thanks to the secondary market, the amounts spent on the Bored Ape skyrocketed. A nearly $100 million total turnover, with the cheapest illustrations reselling for nearly $14,000.
The immense popularity gained, thanks to the likes of two-time NBA MVP and best shooter in basketball history Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors, and Jimmy Fallon who bought a Bored Ape communicating it on their social media, gave way to a whole series of similar projects launched on a weekly basis, hoping to achieve the success of the Bored Ape but with mixed results.
— jimmy fallon (@jimmyfallon) November 17, 2021
The work of the Bored Ape Yacht Club has not stopped, however. A series of collateral and complementary projects have been launched by the founders, such as the development of new NFT (dogs and mutant apes), the organization of meetings between the owners of the apes and apparently will be made a video game starring obviously the bored apes available only to the owners of the most viral illustration of the network.
The peculiarity of the project, however, lies in the concept of ownership. All owners can use in the most diverse and commercially attractive ways their NFT: make it a brand, build a story around their ape and then potentially turn it into a series / animated film or not, etc.. This opportunity gives owners the chance to economically exploit their purchase by trying to make their investment pay off and at the same time allows the Bored Ape Yacht Club to enjoy a blinding reflected light in terms of popularity.
Bu this is only the beginning. Phenomena such as the Bored Ape are popping up and will continue to pop up like mushrooms in a market with a potentially limitless expansion and that will clash with the volatility typical of a system that is still poorly defined and with rules that seem to have not yet been deciphered.