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Letter 3 - Let's talk about Apes (part 1)
Bored apes, to be specific. Very, very bored apes
If you don’t know what apes I am talking about then you are either not in the NFT space or you have been living under a rock, located under another, larger rock, at the bottom of the Mariana trench. There’s probably another rock on top too for good measure. Apes are the talk of the town. They are EVERYWHERE. I should say we are everywhere, since I too am part of the Bored Ape Yacht Club.
The what what what what? A description from their website:
BAYC is a collection of 10,000 Bored Ape NFTs—unique digital collectibles living on the Ethereum blockchain. Your Bored Ape doubles as your Yacht Club membership card, and grants access to members-only benefits, the first of which is access to THE BATHROOM, a collaborative graffiti board. Future areas and perks can be unlocked by the community through roadmap activation.
Bored Ape NFTs were initially sold for 0.08 ETH (~$211), but the current price is a lot higher, with the floor is sitting at 1.1 ETH ($2,895) and the highest sale to date being 49.99 ETH (~$131,584). Quite simply, people are going bananas for these things (heh..?). The big question is: why? I’m going to break it down and try and explain why I think the BAYC has been so successful, and why I think this is just the beginning.
It begins and ends with the letter C, and it’s right there in the name: CLUB. When you buy a bored ape, you’re not just buying a .jpeg file you can use as your twitter profile picture. You’re buying a lifetime membership to an exclusive club, of which there can only ever be 10,000 members. Ten thousand? That seems like a lot! …Does it? Doesn’t it? I am of the mind that it paradoxically both does and doesn’t seem like a lot. In the current landscape with only a tiny % of the world spending money on NFTs and with oodles of avatar projects being launched, yes, 10,000 is a lot. When you zoom out and look at the potential of NFTs and the potential market for NFT avatars it really starts to look like a tiny amount.
Before I go into the details of the club, there’s another very important point to mention. When you buy an ape NFT you get full commercial rights to it. This is important. This means that you can create derivatives from your ape and profit from it. You can turn your ape into a brand, and indeed, many are already doing this. This encourages creativity. Turning one ape into a brand benefits all apes. A rising tide lifts all ships.
Okay so what do you get from being in this ape club? You get some benefits from the BAYC team themselves - they have purchased a massive plot of land in The Sandbox to be used as a Members Only clubhouse in the metaverse, along with a free 3d file version of your ape. They are planning a ‘treasure hunt’ activity with 5 ETH ($13,368) as a prizepool. They are working on a “breeding” mechanic which will allow your ape to (miraculously) reproduce without the aid of another ape, creating a new ape derivative which is sure to have some value and help grow the ecosystem (more on this in part 2). They are offering grants of up to $3,000 for any ape member looking to create something that will enrich the BAYC. These are all cool perks and might justify the initial cost of an ape, but to explain the meteoric price rise they have seen lately you have to look to where the real magic (and value) is created, by the second C: COMMUNITY.
Anyone can create a club, and anyone can join a club. It takes a special something to create a community. The apes have captured lightning in a bottle, and better yet, they’re finding ways to stuff more lightning in there. When you buy an ape you are welcomed into the community, nay - into the family - with the most open arms imaginable. Twitter is atwitter with apes following other apes, so much so that it has become a right of passage for apes to get put in “twitter jail” - a three day temporary ban on following accounts, because they have followed too many apes in too short a time span #apesfollowapes #apetogetherstrong.
Okay that’s great and all - you get some twitter friends, hooray - but is that really worth paying thousands of dollars for? Honestly.. maybe. In the crypto world (as in the real world), networking is king. You make your own luck in this life, and you do that by putting yourself in situations where opportunity can come knocking (and then it’s on you to seize it). The ape community spans the globe and comes from all walks of life - being a part of it is valuable.
There is much more to cover - but it is time for bed, and this letter is sufficiently long enough. Look out for part 2 very soon where I will highlight some of the incredible projects the apes are working on, touch on the NBA stars getting on board with apes (!!), and take a look to see what the future has in store. I will also try to identify what other projects can learn from the apes, since that’s what this is all about.
Have a great day, and remember..
We’re still early.
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Disclaimer: The content covered in this newsletter is not to be considered as investment advice. I’m not a financial adviser. These are only my own opinions and ideas. You should always consult with a professional/licensed financial adviser before trading or investing in any cryptocurrency related product.