GM legens. It was another massive week in Web3, let’s take a look at what went down in this edition of The Chainsaw Weekly Wrap!
This week in Web3
Azuki kick flips into the record books
This week started off with a bang when the anime-inspired Web3 brand Azuki broke the world record for “the most expensive skateboard ever sold” eight times over. The 20 kilogram, 24-karat gold plated-skateboards sold at auction with the most expensive one going for US$400,000 while the least expensive sold for US$260,000.
Zuck gets called out on his expensive metaverse
Last week it was “legs”. This week it was a scathing letter from the big time investors telling Zuckerberg to clean up his act and cut down his “terrifying” expenditure on the metaverse. Brad Gerstner, the letter’s author and CEO of Altimeter Capital said that while Meta should certainly be pursuing some investment in the metaverse and virtual reality, there should be a US$5 billion hard-limit on metaverse research funding — a far cry from the $15 billion that Meta has already spent on metaverse-related R&D this year alone…
On Thursday when the Facebook parent company announced its Q3 earnings, it essentially told the market that they were pursuing their increasingly obscure vision at all costs, doubling down on all things metaverse. Investors responded savagely and sent Meta’s share price to the shadow realm. At the time of writing the price of META is down an eye-watering 25% over the last 24 hours.
Carbon credits for everyone!
On Tuesday an Australian project called BetaCarbon announced the launch of its new platform which will allow Aussies to purchase carbon credits as easily as buying crypto. This is the first time Australian retail investors have been given access to the carbon credit market.
BetaCarbon’s Ethereum-based BCAU token will see eco-conscious investors drive participation in the growing carbon market in a bid to incentivise big emitters to pollute less and less.
In more news on Aussie shores, this week’s Federal Budget announced that despite much deliberation over the taxation status of digital assets, cryptocurrencies would remain a taxable, capital gains-based asset.
Reddit’s “NFTs” took over & Apple cracked down
Last week we saw three million new users onboarded into the world of NFTs as Reddit users created Polygon-based wallets (sorry, “Vaults”) to store their “digital collectible avatars” (NFTs).
This week saw the prices of these “digital collectibles” go entirely nuts, with sales of the Reddit-based NFTs soaring. Some of the NFTs from the Senses collection went for more than US$40,000 and total sales volume surged past the US$3 million mark.
Apple wasn’t as stoked on NFTs as everyone else it seems, enforcing some pretty harsh rules on non-fungibles in its app store. According to Apple: “Apps may not use their own mechanisms to unlock content or functionality,” which unfortunately includes cryptocurrencies and NFTs. Essentially, users can view the NFTs they own within an app provided that they don’t “unlock features or functionality within the app” — not fantastic news for creators.
Musk finally did it
This morning, Elon Musk (who now goes by “Chief Twit”) sort of broke the internet — well part of it at least — when he announced that the US$44 billion takeover of Twitter was complete. Musk got to cutting things down right away, firing the company’s CEO, CFO and the head of legal within moments of the deal going through.
According to Reuters, Twitter’s former-CEO Parag Agrawal was in the building when the takeover was finalised and had to be escorted off the premises by security. He can’t be too mad, as Insider reports that he received a US$38.7 million compensation package for his troubles.
As digital asset markets surprised to the upside and tech stocks like Meta and Amazon got slammed, we saw continued investment in the crypto space, albeit at a slightly reduce pace than witnessed of late:
- Solana-based protocol TRIP raised US$9 million to decentralise ride-sharing and compete with existing service providers such as Uber.
- Origami, which is looking to build a technological framework and guidance for DAOs, raised US$6.2 million in a funding round led by Bloomberg Beta, the early-stage venture firm backed by Bloomberg.
- Kollider, the creator of Bitcoin-based synthetic stablecoins, raised US$2.4 million to expand its exchange business and add more Lightning-native financial tools to its existing product lineup.
- Synota, a startup that wants to bring energy payments to Bitcoin’s Lightning Network, raised US$3 million in a seed round to further commercialise Synota’s software, including plans for a bitcoin mining-related service.
- Fun, a blockchain software development company, raised US$3.9 million in a pre-seed round led by Tinder co-founder Justin Mateen’s Jam Fund. “We want to build wallet infrastructure, we want to enable users to have more seamless access to multi-chain wallets and to multi-chain accounts”, the company said.
- NFT startup Exclusible raised US$5 million to develop their Web3 offerings,including creating NFTs for clients such as Asprey Bugatti, Christian Lacroix and Louis Monet.
- Web3 publishing platform Paragraph raised US$1.7 million in a pre-seed funding round. Paragraph is a publishing platform that helps Web3 writers, DAOs and NFT communities monetise their content through an all-in-one newsletter service.
- Decentralised finance company Thala Labs raised US$6 million to build on the controversial new Layer 1 blockchain Aptos.
- Notebook Labs, who aims to verify the identities of crypto users without compromising privacy, raised US$3.3 million in a seed funding round. The funds will go toward building out the development team, scaling the technology infrastructure and funding security audits for the platform.
Still plenty of action in crypto markets, showing that amid ongoing volatility, confidence in the sectors remains high.
In the impact corner this week, we’re seeing decentralised ledgers becoming increasingly adopted by environmentalists in a move away from siloed data.
Topl, a blockchain built for tracking, tokenising and monetising positive individual and corporate environmental impact, announced the first grantee of its grant program, Sweetgum Labs, which enables environmentally-friendly individuals and companies to understand, record and control their carbon footprint. Sweetgum Labs will use the funds to expand partnerships and bring more stakeholders into the tracking platform, increasing environmental impact data on-chain.
And IMPT, a crypto-cashback platform focused on providing rewards for eco-friendly shoppers, has raised more than $10 million this week after securing affiliate partnerships with major online shopping brands, including Amazon. The platform works by helping shoppers earn crypto credits while shopping who can choose to hold, invest in environmental projects, or retire carbon credits.
Just in time for Halloween, crypto has risen from the dead
This week saw the price of cryptocurrencies jump skywards following some better than expected Q3 earnings reports from companies like Coca Cola (KO) and General Motors (GM).
More recently, Cointelegraph reported that 55,000 Bitcoin (approximately US$1.1 billion worth) had been taken off Binance — the largest single day for outflows ever — which is typically a sign that investors aren’t looking to sell again anytime soon. All of these movements point to a fairly bullish near-term outlook for Bitcoin (BTC) and the rest of the crypto market.
Winners & Losers
This week was a good one, with plenty of solid gains to be had across the market.
The biggest winner in the top 50 for this week was Dogecoin (DOGE) which pumped an impressive 26% from this time seven days ago. This is most likely due to the news that Elon Musk would finally be wrapping up his takeover of Twitter. Australian crypto exchange Swyftx reported that trading volumes for the dog-themed token surged over 1685% on Wednesday, making it the fourth most-traded asset on the platform.
Following Doge into second place was Toncoin (TON), a layer-1 blockchain designed by the team behind encrypted messaging app Telegram, gaining a healthy 20% over the week.
In third place was the second largest cryptocurrency by market cap, Ethereum (ETH) which grew 17%. Senior crypto lawyers and chair of Blockchain NZ, Bryan Ventura told The Chainsaw that Ethereum’s price action largely came from the market “finally waking up to” ETH’s solid post-Merge fundamentals.
While the majority of the market went up, some less fortunate tokens went in the opposite direction. The biggest losers for this week were Chain (XCN) which fell a brutal 22%, and Maker (MKR) which plunged 14%.
As always, here’s the best and brightest of this weeks memes.
And that’s all for this week’s edition of The Chainsaw Weekly Wrap!