Bored Ape Yacht Club, popularly called BAYC, is a collection of 10,000 non-fungible tokens (NFTs) on the Ethereum blockchain. These NFTs are graphical representations of cartoon-like apes that are distinctive in their metadata, which includes the characters’ backgrounds, earrings, clothes, fur, and eyes. Metadata for NFTs is information about and descriptions of a token that the NFT creator supplies.
The Bored Ape Yacht Club, which was launched in 2021, is similar to pieces of artwork sold physically; however, these pieces exist only digitally and are one of a kind because they live on the blockchain—which allows ownership.
- Bored Ape Yacht Club, also known as BAYC, is a non-fungible token (NFT) collection of 10,000 cartoon-like apes.
- At the time of launch, each Bored Ape Yacht Club token cost 0.08 Ether (ETH), equivalent to $220, but in mid-October 2022, they were priced at a minimum of 76 ETH, worth approximately $100,418.
- BAYC was developed in April 2021 by Yuga Labs, and the founders use the pseudonyms Gordon Goner and Gargamel.
- Rarity, utilities, and celebrity endorsement drive the high price of the BAYC collection.
- BAYC is considered a status symbol, and celebrities like National Basketball Association (NBA) star Stephen Curry, singers Eminem and Snoop Dogg, and late-night show host Jimmy Fallon own one.
History of Bored Ape Yacht Club
At the time of launch, a BAYC cost 0.08 Ether (ETH), the native cryptocurrency of the Ethereum platform, which was equivalent to $220 at the time. It sold out within 12 hours; by mid-October 2022, it had climbed to a “floor price” of 76 ETH, or approximately $100,418. A floor price refers to the minimum cost of an NFT within a collection. The dollar value of BAYC is subject to the price of Ether—if ETH rises, the value of the NFTs within this collection takes off. BAYC’s trading volume on Oct. 14, 2022, according to NFT marketplace OpenSea, was 673,000 ETH.
In an historic moment in September 2021, Sotheby’s, one of the world’s largest auction houses, closed its online auction for 101 Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs at $24.4 million.
BAYC has garnered interest from celebrities who purchased the NFTs at inflated prices. Some high-profile stars who flaunt their BAYC include “Tonight Show” host Jimmy Fallon, who bought Bored Ape #599; NBA champions Steph Curry and Shaquille O’Neal; singers Snoop Dogg, Eminem, and Justin Bieber; and world-class soccer player Neymar Jr.
Yuga Labs and the Team Behind Bored Ape
Yuga Labs developed the Bored Ape Yacht Club. The team comprises four pseudonymous core members: Gordon Goner and Gargamel as co-founders, and No Sass and Emperor Tomato Ketchup, who handled the technical aspects of BAYC. They initially appeared under these pseudonyms in the early days of the launch. But BuzzFeed’s revelation of the co-founders’ identity in February 2022 led the other two core members to also give up their incognito status and post pictures of themselves on Twitter.
On March 11, 2022, Yuga Labs acquired the intellectual property for rival NFT collections CryptoPunks and Meebits, giving Yuga Labs ownership of the brand and logo of both of those NFT collections. CryptoPunks is one of the earliest NFT projects. It was among the most valued NFT collections on the NFT marketplace OpenSea, with a trading volume of 1 million ETH before it got delisted in February 2022 for a copyright violation.
The Yuga Labs team raised $450 million in a fundraising round led by venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, it was reported in March 2022, to be valued at $4 billion. The capital is set to be used to expand Yuga Labs’ activities and accelerate brand growth. Other NFT collections that Yuga Labs have started are Mutant Ape Yacht Club (MAYC)—a spinoff of BAYC—and Bored Ape Kennel Club. Both were trading at volumes of 457,000 ETH and 110,000 ETH, respectively, on OpenSea in mid-October 2022.
Understanding What Makes Bored Ape Yacht Club Valuable
Whether the Bored Ape collection is truly worth millions of dollars has been hotly debated. Some believe the high valuations are simply based on speculation. But, in fact, rarity, celebrity endorsements, and utilities and perks have driven the collection’s value up.
The array of BAYC’s unique traits and accessories are used to measure its value. The term “rarity” gauges how unusual an NFT is within a collection with an assigned number. In the BAYC collection, there are more than 160 traits, and each ape may have four to seven trait categories. These traits are background, clothes, earrings, eyes, fur, hat, and mouth.
The most expensive Bored Ape in the collection, BAYC #8817, was auctioned off in October 2021 for $3.4 million on Sotheby’s Metaverse marketplace, an online platform dedicated to rare and extraordinary NFTs. BAYC #8817 had the Solid Gold Fur trait—making it a relatively rare variety of the NFT. Other characteristics of the #8817 token are the Silver Hoop Earrings and the Wool Turtleneck.
BAYC has enticed several celebrities and brands to own pieces of its NFT collection. Adidas is one of the brands contributing to the hype surrounding the NFT collection. Adidas launched “Into the Metaverse,” its native digital collectible, in partnership with Bored Ape Yacht Club, Gmoney, and PUNKS Comic. Following the partnership, BAYC uploaded an image of a Bored Ape wearing an Adidas jacket on Twitter; Gmoney also tweeted a silhouette picture that had an Adidas sweatshirt on; PUNKS Comic tweeted a picture of a character wearing a shirt with the Adidas logo imprinted on it.
Other celebrities who bought BAYC beyond those mentioned include billionaire Mark Cuban, prominent Twitter personality and DJ Steve Aoki, Twitter personalities and musicians Post Malone and Mike Shinoda, and producer and songwriter Timbaland.
Utilities and Perks
One of the distinctive features of the Bored Ape NFT, compared with other NFT collections, is its utilities. Owners of Bored Apes have exclusive access to a private Discord group where they chat, network, and build relationships with other Bored Ape members, including celebrities who own a Bored Ape. Ape holders also have access to “The Bathroom,” letting them make a drawing every 15 minutes on a virtual bathroom wall that acts as a community board.
The exclusivity that comes with the token’s perks makes Bored Ape Yacht Club much more valuable in price than many other NFTs.
Some utilities that have made BAYC attractive include ApeCoin, ApeCoin DAO, and upcoming metaverse games and events. ApeCoin is the official currency for the Bored Ape ecosystem and is used to purchase BAYC’s merchandise, event tickets, and more. ApeCoin DAO is a decentralized autonomous organization where its members—every ApeCoin holder—govern the DAO’s treasury and decide on future projects by voting on proposals.
Overall, owning a Bored Ape is considered a status symbol among many individuals, another key reason for its price steadily rising since its launch.
BAYC Is More Than an NFT Collection
In March 2022, BAYC launched ApeCoin and adopted it as the official currency for the BAYC ecosystem. ApeCoin was distributed to BAYC NFT holders shortly after its launch. As mentioned, with ApeCoin, holders can participate in the governing process and engage the Bored Ape ecosystem. The ApeCoin DAO members will chair further development on the team’s road map, including developing blockchain games, hosting virtual events in the metaverse, and introducing physical products.
In December 2021, the Bored Ape Yacht Club partnered with Animoca, a blockchain gaming firm, to launch a play-to-earn game using the BAYC NFT. Animoca has designed some popular play-to-earn games, such as The Sandbox, and is valued at more than $5 billion.
Also, an Adidas partnership has been formed, as mentioned. The athletic outfitter plans to cast a 3D Bored Ape character in its upcoming metaverse game. The goal is to foster 3D interaction among internet users through collectibles.
Is it possible to lose a Bored Ape Yacht Club non-fungible token (NFT)?
Yes. Several Bored Apes have been stolen through fraudulent hacks. In April 2022, the official Instagram account and Discord server of Bored Ape Yacht Club were hacked, and a phishing link was posted on both BAYC platforms. Hackers stole about 30 Bored Ape tokens from owners who approved a transfer using a fake “mint” link. Outside of potential hacks, however, it is increasingly challenging to lose a Bored Ape NFT.
How can I buy a Bored Ape token?
To buy a Bored Ape token and be part of the exclusive club, visit a platform where the BAYC collection is listed, such as OpenSea. Connect a compatible Ethereum wallet to the marketplace. Once that’s done, search “Bored Ape Yacht Club,” filter out the ape of your choice, and place an order. If the order is confirmed, the ownership of the ape will be transferred to you.
Are Bored Apes losing value?
The value of Bored Apes, like most NFTs, is tied to the crypto market’s condition. In a situation such as the current bear market, where prices of crypto assets steadily decline, it’s expected that the value of Bored Apes will follow the same pattern. But if crypto market sentiment is bullish, then Bored Apes’ value will probably rise above the current floor price.
The Bottom Line
BAYC has evolved into more than a profile-picture (PFP) NFT. It has set a new standard and pace for other NFT collections through the several utilities it has added and plans to add to its collection. Yuga Labs has introduced products built on the blockchain as well as physical products attached the Bored Ape collection.