NFT News: Ripple Launches $250M Creator Fund, Christie’s Sells $12M of NFTs

As NFTs and collectibles alike have gained popularity, the utility behind the art is greater than the current use cases, Ripple said.

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Christie’s collection featured Larva Labs (Est 2005), Crypto Punk 8191 (left) and 9997; Source: Christie’s

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key takeaways

  • “With this $250M Creator Fund, alongside partners MintNFT, Mintable and VSA, we’re giving creators the tools and confidence to do what they do best–create,” Monica Long, GM at Ripple X of Ripple said in an email to Blockworks
  • The highest selling NFT from Christie’s sale was a green-skinned and red-eyed CryptoPunk 9997 which was purchased for about $4.3 million, or HKD $33,850,000

Ripple is launching a $250 million creator fund to support artists and creators building NFT projects on the XRP Ledger (XRPL), the company announced Wednesday. 

“The fund will provide targeted support for creators, brands and marketplaces to explore new use cases for NFTs on the XRPL leveraging its innate advantages of speed, cost and sustainability,” the company said in a blog post

The company also announced it is partnering with NFT marketplaces MintNFT, Mintable and VSA Partners to help accelerate the initiative. 

“Over recent months we’ve stood witness to the incredible impact that NFTs have had on the mainstream and especially on the creator community. However, it became incredibly clear to us that there is a barrier to entry for creators,” Monica Long, GM at Ripple X of Ripple said in an email to Blockworks. “With this $250M Creator Fund, alongside partners MintNFT, Mintable and VSA, we’re giving creators the tools and confidence to do what they do best — create,” Long said. 

Ripple is known for its creation of XRP Ledger, the $XRP token and RippleNet, its global network for financial institutions to transfer money. Year over year, it has increased customer growth three times and has over 300 financial institutions on RippleNet, according to its website.

“When it comes to creating state-of-the-art NFTs, many creators face barriers to entry — including the fear their NFTs won’t sell and a lack of understanding when it comes to navigating NFT concepts,” Ripple said in a statement. “Developers, meanwhile, are often burdened with high transaction fees and clunky user experiences on marketplaces or platforms,” the company added. 

As NFTs and collectibles alike have gained popularity, the utility behind the art is greater than the current use cases, Ripple said. “Digital art and collectibles are only the tip of the NFT iceberg,” the company wrote.

“We see this as just the beginning, kicking off with marketplaces and creators, and potentially uncovering opportunities for new tokenization use cases on the XRP Ledger down the line,” Long said.

Christie’s latest NFT auction totals $12M in sales

In other news, the fine arts and luxury auction house Christie’s has sold a total of $12 million worth of NFTs from a handful of popular collections including: Larva Labs’ CryptoPunks and Meebits and Yuga Labs’ Bored Ape Yacht Club. 

The “No Time Like Present” sale was open from September 17 to September 28 and included various CryptoPunks with hoodies, top hats and red hair alongside apes with halos, party hats and beanies and Meebits with afros and mohawks, to name a few. 

The sales were done through Christie’s Hong Kong and the NFTs were available in Hong Kong dollars, but buyers also had the option to buy the digital artwork in ether, according to the website. 

The highest selling NFT from the sale was a green-skinned and red-eyed CryptoPunk 9997 (above) which was purchased for about $4.3 million, or HKD $33,850,000. The CryptoPunk sold for almost five times over its estimated price range. 

In general, the NFT space has flooded the crypto world as certain NFTs have sold for millions and creators fill the market with new digital artwork. 

Although NFT art and collectibles continue to show popularity, gaming could become the “next frontier” for NFTs, OpenSea Co-Founder Devin Finzer said earlier this month during Messari’s Mainnet conference, Blockworks previously reported.

Separately, at Blockworks’ Digital Asset Summit 2021 in NYC, Matt Hougan, CIO of Bitwise Asset Management, said NFTs are far more than just “digital rocks”. They can revolutionize digital property rights. “As goofy as [paying] $3 million for a digital rock may seem, these are just the first instantiation of digital property rights,” he said.

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