2021 was the year of cryptocurrencies, blockchain technology, and attractive digital asset opportunities. Many people were surprised when they realized that cryptos are gaining mass adoption, not only in market capital but also in infrastructure development. These aspects led to an unforeseen hype and the emergence of a new generation of investors who decided to cash on new types of assets.
Today, we would like to describe one particular type of digital asset that caught the crypto community and mainstream audience’s attention.
In this article we’ll be taking a look at the rise of non-fungible tokens (NFT). We will also share a list of Top 5 Most Expensive NFTs purchased in 2021/2022.
Hence, let us examine some of the most iconic NFTs since the “hype” started.
What is an NFT?
NFT, or Non-Fungible Token, is a digital token on blockchain that represents a piece of digital information, such as art, music, videos, and more, which cannot be duplicated. These assets are bought and sold online on various digital platforms with cryptocurrencies and fiat. They are encoded with reliable and advanced computer algorithms like any other digital asset.
Due to the recent hype, many might assume that non-fungible tokens came only last year, though, in fact, they’ve been around since 2014. Although they have been in the digital space for eight years now, popularity only came in early 2021. The NFT market was worth somewhat $41 billion in 2021 alone. Compared to 2014, it spiked enormously.
NFTs saw exponential growth in 2021, primarily because of the adoption of blockchain technology in this market. On the blockchain, any item could be tokenized and turned into non-fungibles. For this purpose, users are able to use various blockchain-based systems. With billions of dollars circulating in the industry prior to the recent bearish trend that wiped a large amount of capital off the market, we will look at some of the most expensive NFTs sold to date. The current bear market does not mean that the hype is over; it’s just a necessary correction that sooner or later has to happen, especially if you consider the current situation around the world.
Now let’s take a brief look at Top 5 NFTs that were the most expensive over the past year. The following list will be presented in ascending order.
First and foremost, we will shortly describe the CryptoPunks collection since it is one of the industry’s most popular and expensive sets of NFTs. CryptoPunks are non-fungible tokens based on the Ethereum blockchain. The project was launched in 2017 by the Larva Labs studio. This project was inspired by the punk scenes in London, the cyberpunk movement, and famous music artists Daft Punk. CryptoPunks was one of the most popular NFT collections during the so-called “NFT craze of 2021”, along with projects such as Bored Ape Yacht Club. Aside from the hype, they are so expensive because their amount is limited to 10 000 pieces.
Out of 10,000, CryptoPunk #3100 is the second most expensive. This NFT was released in early 2017. Although the highest price for this piece was $2 million in March 2021, it was eventually sold for $7.58 million.
The most expensive NFT from the rare CryptoPunk collection was sold on 10th June 2021 on Sotheby’s digital platform. This particular piece cost an astonishing $11.7 million. The leader of this collection is registered under the name “Covid Alien,” or CryptoPunk #7523. According to Sotheby’s NFT platform, the buyer is Shalom Mackenzie. His net worth is about $1.6 billion, and he is the largest shareholder of bookmaker firm DraftKings. In addition, he is the proud owner of the most expensive NFT from the CryptoPunk collection.
Another spectacular piece of digital art was sold at the end of last year. A hybrid digital artwork by Mike Winkelmann, among crypto enthusiasts better known as Beeple, found a buyer who paid a mind-blowing $28.9 million. The generative sculpture known as Human One was auctioned off on 9th November, 2021, the day before Bitcoin reached its all-time high at 69 000 USD. Speaking of which, learn how to use our cryptocurrency payment platform B2BinPay. The art itself is a digital and kinetic video sculpture with a corresponding dynamic NFT. This digital work is designed to continuously display artwork that is supposed to evolve in the future.
The First 5000 Days
Number two goes to NFT called “Everyday: The First 5000 Days.” It is yet another digital work of art created by Beeple. This “montage” is a collection of 5000 digital images created by Beeple for his “Everyday series.” This NFT token was sold for a shocking $69.3 million at Christie’s in 2021, a 255-year-old auction house. This fact helped it become the second most expensive piece of digital art. An interesting fact is that before his success, Mike Winkleman had never sold a piece of digital art for more than $100!
The most expensive non-fungible digital token came under the name “The Merge.” This unit was created by an anonymous digital artist nicknamed “Pak.” An interesting fact is that the founder of the most successful and most significant cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, remains unknown to this day as well. Pak created the most expensive NFT ever, which was sold at the beginning of December 2021 for a sensational 91.8 million US dollars. This art has been sold at the NFT decentralized marketplace Nifty Gateway. However, this piece is slightly different from regular digital artworks.
This exact art was fractionalized into more than 312 000 pieces and distributed to 28 983 buyers. The thing here is that “The Merge” is a single artwork composed of a collection of “masses” available for users that are ready to buy it separately.
Therefore, these pieces are stockpiled to make a bigger “mass” and sell on the secondary market. By the end of this unorthodox wholesale, $91.8 million was spent, making it the most expensive NFT sold to this day.There are countless other exciting NFTs available for lower and accessible prices. Most NFT platforms accept Bitcoin as payment, as they run on blockchain technology. To acquire crypto, it is often necessary to convert a traditional currency to crypto online. On our B2BinPay platform, we offer an easy-to-use crypto payment service, where you will be guided through a cryptocurrency payment gateway. This solution allows you to open your cryptocurrency business account, where you can receive/send digital payments and obtain funds immediately in exchange.