When $114M in CryptoPunks Sell, So Do Other NFT Projects

CryptoPunk sales exploded over the past week, and the rest of the NFT market is coming along for the ride.

The OG NFT avatar project has always been the biggest tour de force in the NFT marketplace, but recently the project has seen an unprecedented amount of sales, in both volume and value. From July 25 through August 1, 933 Punks sold for a total of $114M. CryptoPunks’ all-time volume is $523.5M, meaning that last week’s sales made up 22% of the overall CryptoPunk volume.


CryptoPunks Market History via Nonfungible.com

All Boats Rise

As it turns out, what’s good for CryptoPunks is also good for the NFT market at-large. On Opensea, sales for top NFT projects increased dramatically in volume over the same time period.

Major winners included CryptoPunks creator Larva Labs’ other projects, Autoglyphs and Meebits, which saw a seven-day volume increase of 1104% and 528% respectively. Art Blocks collections and Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) also saw significant volume increases.

The Big Sales

Sales over the past week included Ape Punk #5217 for 2.25K ETH, worth$5.5M USD, and Ape Punk #2140 for 1.6K ETH, or $3.8M. The latter Punk was purchased by entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk, whose VeeFriends NFT project has been extremely successful in its own right as well.

These are currently the third and fourth highest CryptoPunk sales to occur outside of a mainstream auction house. The highest CryptoPunk sale ever was Alien Punk #7523, which sold for $11.8M at Sotheby’s “Natively Digital” auction in June 2021.

On July 31, one whale alone spent $6M on 104 CryptoPunks, constituting over 1% of the overall supply of 10K. Going by the handle @0x650d, the whale purchased 88 of these in a single block through MiningDAO — a block production protocol that lets buyers communicate with miners to facilitate entire private blocks in exchange for rewards. This allowed the buyer to complete the purchase without any potential interference from front-runners, those who might have paid a higher gas fee to snipe one of the CryptoPunks. According to The Block, @0x650d paid the miner a 5 ETH tip for the transaction.

While it’s hard to identify the exact cause of this latest NFT gold rush, there has been some mainstream media attention on the ecosystem lately. An article about Bored Apes and other NFT clubs was published in The New Yorker on July 30, comparing Apes to a combination of gated online community, stock-shareholding group and art-appreciation society. It seems the overall sentiment towards NFTs and their role in the digital future is shifting. And that will mean the desire for CryptoPunks and other NFTs will keep growing.