Payments technology firm Visa stated on Monday that they had purchased a CryptoPunk as they join the world of NFTs.
For around $150,000 last week, Visa has purchased CryptoPunk 7610, one of 3,840 women punks. The earliest NFTs launched by Larva Labs in 2017 are regarded as CryptoPunks. These are a 10,000-pixel art collection of photos depicting misfits and excentricities. Each CryptoPunk is distinct and has its own personality.
“We felt CryptoPunks would be a huge addition to our collection of objects that are able to charter and celebrate the history, present, and future of business,” said Cuy Sheffield, head of cryptographic Visa.
As part of the art collection, Visa holds numerous vintage items linked to the market like early credit cards and knuckle buster, a device dealer used before the advent of the electronic point-of-sale terminals to record credit card transactions, said Sheffield.
Sheffield explained that CryptoPunks “pioneered the NFT technology and wave of NFT commerce,” thus Visa decided to purchase one. Given that it is a historical NFT initiative, he stated that the decision was made less about the specific punk and more about CryptoPunks in general.
According to Sheffield, Visa partnered with Anchorage Digital to purchase the CryptoPunk, which means Anchorage handled the deal and is now custodying the NFT for Visa. “We bought it with fiat from Anchorage,” he explained. Additionally, Visa and Anchorage collaborated for the first time earlier this year to settle payments in the USDC stablecoin on Ethereum.
NFTs in commerce
NFTs, according to Visa, will play a significant role in the future of trade.
Sheffield believes that NFTs can assist individual content creators and small and medium-sized organizations in innovative ways. “NFTs are a crossroads of culture and commerce,” he continued.
Sheffield compared NFTs to the early days of e-commerce, claiming that e-commerce allowed small businesses to sell online and reach clients worldwide. However, they must still manufacture and ship tangible goods, which can be costly upfront. According to Sheffield, NFTs enable a small firm to use a public blockchain to manufacture digital commodities that can be delivered quickly to a crypto wallet anywhere in the world. “We can see a future where your crypto address is as significant as your mailing address,” he predicted.
According to Visa, merchants, brands, and content platforms interested in participating in the NFT market are showing “quite significant” interest. “So now we’re committing to begin assisting clients in navigating methods to participate in the NFT commerce environment,” Sheffield added.
Visa has also released a whitepaper on NFTs to assist businesses in understanding how to incorporate NFTs into their platforms and how Visa can assist.
According to Sheffield, Visa’s fundamental function is to assist customers in purchasing NFTs and businesses in accepting NFTs as simply as they do for traditional commodities and e-commerce.
According to Sheffield, Visa is currently “actively engaged” with a number of its clients, assisting them in understanding how to participate in the NFT ecosystem.
Visa established an internal crypto team in 2019 and has subsequently launched various crypto-related initiatives. Visa became the first major payment network to settle a transaction with a stable coin lately. As reported previously, it has also set its eyes on facilitating central bank digital currency or CBDC payments.
The Metaverse, According to Paris Hilton, Will be the “Future of Partying”
At ‘The Tonight Show,’ the pop-culture princess presented everyone in the audience with an NFT from her upcoming Superplastic line.
Paris Hilton, the original influencer, has continued her quest into the metaverse, calling it the “future of partying, going out, mingling with people, and being sociable.”
Hilton was a guest on Jimmy Fallon’s Tonight Show on Monday, where she discussed her experiences in the NFT ecosystem.
Hilton told Fallon that she would be releasing her first NFT collection with Superplastic on the Origin Protocol “soon,” although she didn’t provide a date. Superplastic is a firm that makes vinyl toys and digital memorabilia.
She showed the audience the collection, dubbed “Forever Fairytale,” a collage of memories with her new husband, Carter Reum. She then presented Fallon with the collection’s first NFT, as well as additional NFTs to each member of the crowd.
“I believe that was the first NFT giveaway ever on television,” Fallon added. On January 18, Superplastic released its “Headtripz” NFT collection, which included a piece created in collaboration with Hilton.
Even though this will be her first collection, it will not be her first journey into the NFT world. Hilton sold her “Iconic Crypto Queen” NFT for $1.1 million in April 2021.
In a November 2021 interview with The Guardian, Hilton stated that she began investing in cryptocurrency in 2016 after “becoming acquainted with the founders of Ethereum.” Since then, she’s amassed an impressive NFT collection of 141 pieces, including a “Bored Ape” and works by Grimes and Steve Aoki.
In recent years, the pop culture figure has become an unexpected advocate for the metaverse. Hilton’s “Paris World” debuted on the online gaming platform Roblox on New Year’s Eve 2021, with Hilton performing a DJ set in front of a virtual audience.
“I believe individuals must be present in both the physical and digital worlds,” she told Bloomberg on Friday.
Users can buy clothing from her closet or hang out on her yacht at Paris World, which includes an amusement park, petting zoo, nightclub, and home.
According to Roblox statistics, the metaverse island has only drawn roughly 63,900 visits thus far. Roblox’s “ALDC Studio” world, which was inspired by the American reality TV show Dance Moms, has over 30.5 million visitors.
Hilton’s Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, and YouTube accounts have a combined total of 55 million followers.
Despite the dismal statistics, Hilton expressed optimism for the island’s future. “I anticipate Paris World expanding into a year-round destination for many events,” she said, citing Valentine’s Day, the Super Bowl, and New York Fashion Week as examples.
Following the popularity of her reality TV show The Simple Life in 2003, the rich heiress soared to stardom. She recently debuted a new show, Paris in Love, as well as a podcast, This is Paris.
Ethereum’s Main Rival in NFT According to JPMorgan
NFTs headquartered in Solana have been able to sell $1 billion worth of NFTs.
According to JPMorgan analysts, Ethereum’s supremacy in the NFT industry is under threat from the Solana blockchain, which has grown rapidly last year.
Ethereum dominance in NFT is being threatened
The bank stated in the research that Ethereum’s dominance in areas where it formerly reigned supreme is now threatened by competitors such as Solana. To be more precise, the bank stated that the expansion of Solana threatens Ethereum’s dominance in the NFT space.
According to analysts at the bank, Ethereum accounted for about 95% of all transactions and new NFT creations at the start of 2021. However, due to the proliferation of other blockchains, that percentage has reduced to 80%.
How Solana puts Ethereum’s dominance in jeopardy
Though it still has a significant lead, the bank said that Solana-based NFTs grew significantly during the period because their network is more sustainable. After all, it employs a single mechanism to validate transactions.
Aside from that, the analysts pointed out that Ethereum’s current reliance on the proof of work process makes it unappealing to investors concerned about the technology’s environmental impact. On the other hand, minting fresh tokens on Solana appeals to them since it consumes far less energy.
Another reason why Ethereum’s competitors are chosen is the cryptocurrency’s record-high transaction fees. On Ethereum, a typical transaction could cost $50 or more, but transactions on competing blockchains cost less than $1.
Because the NFT market is the fastest-growing segment in the crypto business, the bank decided that investors and aficionados of the ETH blockchain should be concerned.
Despite the crypto industry’s slow start this year, the NFT area has seen a surge in transaction volume, with the largest NFT marketplace, OpenSea, already surpassing its previous transaction high.
Sales of Solana NFT have surpassed $1 billion
Solana’s journey to the top of the NFT market began in the second half of last year when the Ethereum network was experiencing gas charge troubles. Due to the high cost of these fees, competing blockchains such as Solana and others grew in popularity as investors sought ways to avoid paying the exorbitant fees.
NFTs on Solana saw its first $1 million in sales in no time. Then a Degenerated Ape Academy NFT was sold for the same price, and a SolMonkey was sold for more than $2 million less than a month later.
As a result of the rising interest in the digital token field this year, total sales of Solana-based NFTs have now surpassed $1 billion in January.
Snoop Dogg Gives Advice to Reese Witherspoon on Ethereum NFTs
Snoop Dogg, a celebrity NFT collector, shares his thoughts on who to watch in the space.
Reese Witherspoon is dabbling in the crypto realm, starting with an Ethereum (ETH) purchase and now her first NFTs. On the latter front, she’s getting help from Snoop Dogg, a rapper and entertainer who just claimed that he’s very involved in the NFT movement.
“Just bought my first NFTs!” tweeted Witherspoon on Monday. “I’m gaining a lot of knowledge. I’d love to hear about inspiring women who are developing #NFTs. Chat with me on #cryptotwitter.” She didn’t specify which NFTs she bought. In early September, Witherspoon tweeted about purchasing her first ETH, and she sought guidance from Crypto Twitter in both situations.
Snoop has identified himself as a dedicated NFT collector under the moniker Cozomo de’ Medici, with a collection valued at more than $17 million as of this writing (per DappRadar). As his Cozomo Twitter account shows, he’s well-versed in the scene and was ready with a recommendation for Witherspoon.
Snoop advised Witherspoon contact Priyanka Desai, the chief of operations at OpenLaw and an NFT-collecting DAO Flamingo DAO member, in a quote-tweet.
Snoop’s Cozomo de’ Medici pseudonym tweeted, “May I kindly recommend a conversation with @PriDesai, one of the most influential women in NFT, who can then connect you with the most incredible female artists, collectors, and innovators in our world,”
Snoop’s tweet has elicited no response from Witherspoon. Still, she did enjoy several other responses from the Crypto Twitter community, including a couple about the World of Women NFT initiative. She also liked tweets from Stoner Cats, the NFT-funded animated project co-created by actress Mila Kunis, and one from someone who said if she bought a Deadfellaz NFT, they would get a “Reese” tattoo.
In late September, Snoop Dogg unveiled his Cozomo de’ Medici NFT-collecting identity, as well as cooperation with The Sandbox, an upcoming NFT-based metaverse game.
He also uses a CryptoPunks NFT as his Twitter avatar, and he’s just purchased more high-value Ethereum NFTs, including a $3.9 million piece from XCOPY and an undisclosed stake (a “large portion,” according to the broker) of an Art Blocks “Fidenza” NFT valued at 2,500 ETH ($8.7 million).
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