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Cryptocurrency Stories

Cryptocurrency Stories
  • There have been even more C-suite level changes in crypto organizations, including Parity and Gemini. Aptos took its first steps on the mainnet.
  • The NFT royalty debate continued 

Crypto news over the past week saw a continuation of familiar trends as the industry moved forward amid falling prices. There were even more changes at the C-suite level with a reorganization at Gemini and a leadership change at Polkadot-linked Parity. VC-backed Aptos proved it could build in a bear market when its mainnet went live. And the existential moment for NFT projects continued as many contemplated a potential future of 0% creator royalties. These are the stories that got us talking for the last week:

Gemini and Parity’s top-level change

The week ended with news of high-level changes in crypto organizations, a consistent trend amid the bear market. Cameron Winklevoss has resigned from his position on the Gemini Europe board, it was announced on Monday. The investor, billionaire and co-founder of cryptocurrency exchange Gemini officially resigned as head of its European office on October 12. Cameron and his twin brother, Tyler Winklevoss, will remain Chairman and CEO of Gemini.

The couple founded the cryptocurrency exchange in 2014. Later in the week, we learned that Gavin Wood was stepping down as CEO of Parity Technologies, a key developer of the Polkadot blockchain ecosystem. A colleague from Parity replaces him—founder Bjorn Wagner. “The role of CEO has never been one I’ve coveted (and that goes way back before Parity),” Wood said in a blog post. “Anyone who has worked with me knows where my heart beats.” 

I am a thinker, programmer, designer and architect. Like many of these people, I’m better off working asynchronously. The pair joined the likes of MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor, Kraken’s Jesse Powell, Genesis CEO Michael Moro, Alameda Research’s Sam Trabucco, FTX’s Brett Harrison, and Celsius CEO Alex Mashinsky. They have left significant crypto posts over the past few months.

Aptos: The new kid on the blockchain 

It’s been a busy week for the new kid on the blockchain, Aptos, the Layer 1 project developed by former Meta employees. The mainnet went live earlier this week. User transactions resumed on October 18. An update on Tokenomics showed that the blockchain will have an initial supply of 1 billion tokens, which will increase to 1.5 billion by the end of 2031. The minimum unit for Aptos, like a satoshi or a wei, is called an octa. Your tokens will be split between the community (51%) and top contributors (19%). The foundation (16.5%) and the investors (13.5%).

According to an announcement on Twitter, as of Tuesday night, the company allocated 20.1 million APT tokens as an airdrop, representing 2% of its initial total supply of 1 billion apps. Shortly after the airdrop opened, these tokens were worth between $200 million and $260 million, depending on the token’s market price.

The NFT royalty debate raged on

The NFT space continued to have heated debates about the future of artist royalties. Magic Eden last week announced a move to an optional royalty model, a move that means those who buy or sell NFTs can choose what percentage of a sale gets returned to the original creator royalty, long considered one of the Key use cases of NFTs are touted, allowing creators to monetize second-hand sales. Still, there’s no way to make people cough at the log level. Instead, fee collection has traditionally been left to the NFT markets themselves.

If marketplaces don’t get paid, creators don’t get paid. Magic Eden’s COO called the problem a “prisoner’s dilemma” in an interview with The Block. In the meantime, we explain why applying NFT royalties on-chain is almost impossible. Nike and Bored Ape Yacht Club’s parent company, Yuga Labs, was later revealed to be one of the primary beneficiaries of the royalties in a report by Galaxy Digital.

Royalties from Ethereum-based NFT projects generated $1.8 billion in revenue. The top 10 NFT projects generated $489 million, or 27% of all royalties earned. Yuga Labs brought in $147.6 million in royalties from its Bored Ape, Mutant Ape, and Otherside projects, followed by $82 million from Art Blocks.

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