The wild world of NFTs has taken the crypto world by storm in the last 12 months, and while they’re not for everyone, they’ve captured the interest of most people owing to the sheer volume and amount of projects sprouting up in the field. The most popular NFTs are also the most lucrative, with purchasers paying hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars for an NFT — frequently attached to a community — that they can either keep or sell for a profit later (or loss). However, how liquid is the blue-chip NFT market?
According to NFT data aggregator CryptoSlam, the top 50 blue-chip NFT collections have seen multimillion-dollar sales in the last seven days. According to the statistics, the top 10 NFT collections alone brought in nearly $500 million in trades from 19,468 different purchasers during that period. However, many NFT holders have stated that this demand is accompanied with inherent risk and market instability, among other considerations, which influence the future of these digital collectibles and their liquidity.
It’s also worth noting that high-roller NFT buyers are typically fewer than those in the larger NFT market, but PROOF Collective’s new — and possibly blue-chip — Moonbirds NFTs were officially minted on April 16 and accounted for the majority of the sales tracked by CryptoSlam over the last seven days, raking in $297 million across 10,813 buyers. (When a digital file is converted into an NFT or digital asset on a blockchain, generally Ethereum or Solana, and its information is permanently saved on the blockchain, this is known as a mint.)
Even with Moonbirds, there were over 10,000 customers on April 17, the day after it was released. However, according to CryptoSlam statistics, that number dropped to just 296 on April 19. The floor price, which is the cheapest price for a digital collectable in the collection, has also dropped by about 16 percent in the last 24 hours. “The difficulty is that when prices go down, they go down rapidly,” The Nifty’s CEO and co-founder Nick O’Neill told TechCrunch. “This is especially true in NFTs.” Prices can change substantially when consumers get apprehensive.”
Apes that are bored are anything but boring. The Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC), a collection of 10,000 apes on the Ethereum blockchain, is one of the most popular NFT collections. Its current floor price is above 113 ether ($351,868 USD). According to OpenSea statistics, 496,700 ether, or $15,466,641,960, has been traded for BAYC thus far. “It would sell in two seconds if I sold my [BAYC] right now for 50 ETH. Because of the present market, even if I sold it for 80 ETH, it would definitely sell in a matter of seconds,” O’Neill remarked.
While BAYC’s floor price is around its all-time high, it decreased 37% from February 26 to March 10, 2022, according to OpenSea data, just before the company debuted its cryptocurrency, ApeCoin. Although prices have now rebounded, it serves as a reminder that even the largest NFT initiatives can experience setbacks. Yuga Labs, the parent company of BAYC and other startups, raised $450 million in a seed round headed by Andreessen Horowitz in March 2022, valuing the company at $4 billion.
Even before this cash raise, the NFT business showed no signs of slowing down, purchasing CryptoPunks and Meebits from Larva Labs earlier that month to increase its stake in popular NFT projects. “I don’t think there’s necessarily a liquidity concern in this market,” O’Neill said. “However, the liquidity issue will emerge when everyone wants to sell and the market shuts.” In general, the ideal moment to sell is when the market is rising.”