The crypto market gets a new craze to talk about every now and then. We've seen it happen several times - whether the non-fungible tokens (NFTs) or the metaverse or even meme coins.
Weeks ago, a new trend launched that surprised everyone - ApeCoin. The asset has been as polarizing as ever, and it seems like this is just the start for many who have strong opinions about it.
So, for beginners who might not even understand what ApeCoin is, here's an explainer:
What Is ApeCoin?
ApeCoin is an ERC-20 token built on the Ethereum blockchain. The asset is fungible, making it a departure from the popular NFTs that can't be traded for each other. ApeCoin is also building an ecosystem of users who will trade and create a small economy.
As soon as it launched, ApeCoin became a massive hit among investors. Many of them believed that the set had been linked to the Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs, which are among the bestselling NFTs to date. Of course, the asset's name definitely alludes to some sort of link between it and the Bored Ape creators.
The links only became more prominent when ApeCoin got listed by several of the top exchanges in the world. Today, big names like FTX and KuCoin have already listed ApeCoin. The asset is even listed on Coinbase - the world's second-largest crypto exchange, which has a reputation for being very difficult to get listed on.
Just a day after ApeCoin began trading, the asset hit a market cap of $2 billion. Data from its CoinMarketCap page shows that it is already the 39th largest coin in the market, with a market cap of $4.1 billion. The asset is currency trading at $15, and it has a cap of 1 billion tokens.
So Who Created It?
According to the ApeCoin website, the asset was created by the ApeCoin decentralized autonomous organization (DAO). The governing body is composed of all APE members and holders, and it is expected to get proposals from the community and hold votes on them.
There is also the Ape Foundation - an organization expected to handle daily DAO administration, proposal management, and other tasks. The Ape Foundation's primary goal is to ensure that the DAO community has enough resources and support for their proposals to become a reality.
Just as well, there is an Ape Foundation subcommittee that will serve as the "board" for the ApeCoin DAO. The initial committee consists of five founding members - Amy Wu, the head of FTX Ventures; Reddit co-founder and Coinbase investor Alexis Ohanian Sr.; Dean Steinbeck of Horizen Labs; Maaria Bajwa of Sound Ventures; and Animoca Brands' Yat Siu. Each board member gets to stay there for six months, and DAO members will be able to vote on future board members in subsequent tenure.
The Yuga Labs Connection
But, despite ApCoin's attempts to distance itself from its true creators, the project is linked to Yuga Labs - the developers of the Bored Ape NFTs.
Yuga Labs has been quietly becoming an NFT behemoth, purchasing the CryptoKitties and Meebits collections weeks ago from Larva Labs. The company also takes a cut whenever it sells a Bored Ape NFT. These NFTs command prices as high as $500,000 per unit, with Yuga Labs eventually earning a healthy $127 million in profits last year from sales cuts alone.
Recently, Yuga Labs has been working towards expanding from just selling pricey NFTs. The company has branched out to sell virtual land in a multiplayer online role-playing game called The Otherside. In a deck obtained by The Block, this role-playing game will have ApeCoin as its primary token.
As many news outlets have reported, ApeCoin and the ApeCoin DAO have done their best to distance themselves from Yuga Labs. The reason for this is unknown, especially since Yuga Labs is one of the most notable names in the NFT space for now. One would think that affiliating yourself with a brand like that will be a boost for you and your coin's price.