China Is Coming for Crypto & The Metaverse
Crypto has been banned in China since 2021, but that looks ripe to change very soon. Here's what you need to know, plus a glimpse at Jack Butcher's Opepen market.
TylerD's Market Summary
Today's top news includes:
China embracing crypto, NFTs & the metaverse
Opepens heat up
Snowfro's Squiggles fetch top dollar
Blur adds much-needed function
Hape Prime parent company acquired for $12M
🇨🇳 China Embraces Crypto, NFTs and the Metaverse
While the U.S. government is busy launching anti-crypto propaganda and trying to stifle innovation, China is moving in the opposite direction.
Three key pieces of information came out yesterday, highlighting how the Chinese state is embracing crypto and the metaverse (and NFTs may be along for the ride).
Here's what you need to know.
China and Crypto
Crypto has been officially banned in China since 2021.
That might not be the case for long.
CZ Binance broke the news yesterday, that CCTV (China Central Television) did a broadcast featuring crypto.
We knew that Hong Kong was allowing crypto trading for accredited investors starting in June, but this seems like a step towards allowing retail adoption.
CZ describes how Chinese communities "are buzzing" with crypto-related excitement. He even goes on to state that coverage like this has historically led to bull runs.
The crypto markets fell on the day, so eager bulls might have to wait a bit for this bull run to start, but it's promising news nonetheless.
The news also came with an NFT twist.
China and NFTs
Apparently the CCTV broadcast covering crypto also had an NFT component.
Care to guess which NFT was featured?
Didn't have that one on my bingo card.
An image of a Pig Meebit is shown on a reporter's phone, with several other Meebit figurines shown behind a glass case.
The market reacted immediately, with the Meebits floor jumping 15% to 2.25 ETH, while rare Meebits (Elephants and Pigs) were swept up.
The floor did retrace overnight, to 1.98 ETH - so China buyers aren't here yet.
But perhaps they're coming?
China and the Metaverse
Not to be left out, we also got a major headline yesterday regarding China and metaverse adoption.
Chinese city Nanjing launched a state-backed platform called the China Metaverse Technology and Application Innovation Platform, to foster metaverse research and application across the country.
Its goal is to have an annual $19B of metaverse revenue by 2025.
A few takeaways from the announcement:
The goal: unite resources to strengthen metaverse-related research, encompassing VR, AR and virtual worlds
The platform aims to gather academic institutions and metaverse-related companies from all over China
There's a metaverse race happening, as Chinese cities, including Nanjing and Shanghai, are vying for dominance in China's metaverse development
Shanghai has loftier goals than Nanjing, setting its metaverse revenue target at $50B by 2025.
A state-backed report even highlighted the importance of the metaverse in fields such as education, commerce, healthcare and entertainment.
Why It Matters
Despite stringent regulations on crypto and NFTs, China clearly sees the potential for this technology.
They are looking to advance their digital economy, recognizing that crypto, the metaverse, and even NFTs will play a primary role.
Hopefully our U.S. politicians are taking note.
🐸 Jack Butcher's Opepens Take Off
Jack is hot.
His Checks Elements auctions closed on Tuesday, fetching a total of 50 ETH across 3 pieces.
But those auctions pale in comparison to what's been happening in the Opepen world.
A few key price stats:
Opepen unrevealed floor: 0.66 ETH (+105% this week)
Opepen R001 floor: 30 ETH (+143%)
Opepen R002 floor: 3.369 ETH (+270%)
Opepen unrevealed 1/1 floor: 8.5 ETH (+46%)
Scarcity has taken over in demand for Jack's R001 Opepen set, widely believed to have the most provenance in the collection.
And that R001 floor rocketing to 30 ETH (with sales as high as 25 ETH), has dragged up all the other floors with it.
Last night on a GN Web3 spaces, Jack mentioned there will be several pack drops next week.
Shortly after, notable geometric Pepe artist Batzdu tweeted an Opepen in his traditional style, with speculation running that he may be included as a guest artist next week.
That would get this market buzzing, as Geometric Pepes have a 6.88 ETH floor.
Even if Batzdu is a headfake, next week will be big.
The performance of these next few packs will likely dictate the near-term price action for the entire collection (perhaps with R001 excluded).
We will be following closely.
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🚚 What else is happening in NFTs?
Here is the list of other notable headlines from the day in NFTs:
Trading volume was at 14k ETH on Wednesday, with a very mixed board of red and green
Snowfro's Squiggles minted out yesterday after a 24-hour auction, with a min widding bid of 18 ETH and a top bid of 19.9 ETH
Art Blocks Curated drop "Human Unreadable" minted out at 0.9 ETH in a last-price Dutch auction, and quickly surged over 100% on secondary to 1.9 ETH before settling at 1.5
Azuki opened up new tickets for its upcoming Vegas event, with the RSVP window closing on May 28
Blur added partial repayment for its Blend and BNPL program (a feature sorely needed), and also added BAKC and Otherdeeds to Blend yesterday, with floors falling to 4 ETH (-1.5%) and 1.01 ETH (-6%) respectively
Memeland CEO 9GAG confirmed plans to launch $MEME token, coming soon, along with a new partner in Tju Liang Chua, head of blockchain & digital assets at Drew & Napier
0n1 Force announced the hire of a new creative director, with prior experience working with Overwatch, Batman and more
Pudgy Penguins announced a new Shark Suit vinyl toy, priced at $250, launching Friday
🌎 Around Crypto and Web3
A few other Crypto and Web3 headlines that caught my eye:
The crypto market fell on Wednesday; BTC -1.75% at $22,230; ETH -1.5% at $1,790; notably, the correlation of BTC and the NASDAQ index has fallen to 17-month lows
Hape Prime's parent company Digimental Studio was acquired for $12M by Vertex Labs, a UK-based web3 and AI company; plans to launch staking program and has big plans for the metaverse
The Sandbox is partnering with hospitality company Cipriani, introducing immersive Italian luxury experiences into the metaverse
Axie Infinity unveiled its Epic Era, Season 4 in Origins, featuring a prize pool of over 39,000 $AXS ($261,300) and a better gameplay experience
🚀 NFT Total Volume
Milady (2,251 ETH; 3.07 ETH Floor)
MAYC (1,602 ETH, 9.5 ETH)
Azuki (1,257 ETH, 14.5 ETH)
Pudgy Penguins (1,077 ETH, 5.04 ETH)
BAYC (1,002 ETH, 45.75 ETH)
📈 NFT Floor Price Increase
AB x Bright Moments (76%, 0.69 ETH Floor)
Mekaverse (65%, 0.29 ETH)
OSF RLD (64%, 11 ETH)
Rarepass: Genesis (49%, 22.3 ETH)
REWORLD by Roope (36%, 1.5 ETH)
🗓 Upcoming NFT Mints and Reveals
Today is a slower day of new drops after yesterday's bonanza.
Open Headition is likely the mint of the day, from the creator of Dippies and Fethers. This mushroom-inspired art drop is described as an “infinite generative open edition,” and at 0.015 ETH, not a bad entry price for those who like the art.
Figuregot (10:00 a.m. ET); 0.077 ETH
Open Headition (3:00 p.m. ET); 0.015 ETH
Enjoy this write-up? Follow along with me on Twitter @tyler_did_it or reach out via email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For all volume and floor price data, see Lucky Trader's Project Rankings page.
For all upcoming mints, see Lucky Trader's Project Schedule page.