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The NFT industry has seen tremendous growth throughout 2021. That trend will likely continue throughout 2022, warranting a closer look at how whales and other big traders approach the market. In a recent report, the DappRadar team analyzed the wallets and trading behaviour of Wilcox, Dingaling, and Pranksy.
A Good Start to 2022 For NFTs
Even though the crypto industry has been rather bearish in the first seven weeks of 2022, NFTs remain very popular among whales and other traders. It appears some users see NFTs as a store of value when crypto assets like Bitcoin and Ethereum become more volatile as of late. That becomes outspoken when looking at the overall trading volume for non-fungible tokens.
As DappRadar points out, the overall volume has surpassed $22 billion when including the LooksRare marketplace. That is a spectacular amount, although there are some concerns over potential wash trading on LooksRare. As such, the overall volume excluding this marketplace of $6.7 billion remains impressive. Moreover, it warrants a closer investigation into NFT whales and how they approach this popular market vertical in 2022.
Similar to cryptocurrency whales, an NFT whale will use a specific trading strategy to maximize its profit. The NFT whales under review in DappRadar’s report are Pranksy, Dingaling, and Wilcox. Pranksy holds over 32,000 NFTs valued at over $120 million. Dingaling has over 3,600 NFTs – and over 100 BAYC assets – valued at over $53 million.
Finally, Wilcox primarily invested in CryptoPunks and Meebit, amassing over 1,200 NFTs valued at $66.7 million. Interestingly, Wilcox is less interested in flipping compared to Pranksy, confirming a very different approach to making money with NFTs.
Virtual Worlds Are In High Demand
The NFT industry has gained tremendous attention due to Web3 implications. Moreover, the acquisition of virtual land in The Sandbox, Decentraland, Somnium Space, or other environments is ramping up quickly. All three NFT whales dabble in virtual land plots, with Pranksy flipping over 500 plots in the Sandbox in the past half-year. That user also holds NFT Worlds plots, apartments in WorldWide Webb, and Decentraland NFTs.
Dingaling takes a different approach to virtual worlds by investing in avatars and associated projects. The user has over 150 Voxies, 150 VoxoDeus, and 17 RTFKT’s Clone-X. Additionally, Dingaling owners a large Sandbox and Decentraland plot, among other NFTs. The RTFKT studio, focused on design and fashion, was acquired by NIKE, Inc in late 2021 for an undisclosed amount.
Finally, Wilcox has shown an interest in metaverse avatars from various projects. Holdings include Sandbox voxels, CryptoVoxel land, Meta Key NFTs, and CyberKongz VX. That latter NFT collection has generated over 30,400 ETH in trading volume on OpenSea alone, confirming overall demand for ownership of a randomly generated 3D NFT social avatar.
Even Whales Hold Fake NFTs
In their quest to scoop up NFTs with profit potential, users can be misled by fake NFTs. That concept applies to our three whales, too, even though one would expect them to avoid such pitfalls with ease. Pranksy, for example, has 4,700 fake Adidas NFTs associated with their wallet address, even though the user never minted any. Dingaling and Wilcox also hold counterfeit Adidas NFTs, although not by their own doing.
It is likely to assume fake and counterfeit NFTs will be associated with whales for the foreseeable future. This is because scam projects will automatically seek association with these wallet addresses to gain legitimacy and trick other users in minting these non-fungible tokens. Figuring out the address of an NFT whale is not too difficult, and anyone can send tokens, currencies, or NFTs to any other address on the network.
Larva Labs And New Project Exposure
Larva Labs, creators of CryptoPunks, Meebits, and Autoglyphs, is by far one of the most influential entities in the non-fungible token industry. Moreover, their collections are of great interest to whales, although our three whales take vastly different approaches. Nevertheless, it is good to see different strategies come into play, as many other collections are worth exploring.
- Wilcox: a CryptoPunk and Meebits whale with 246 and 281 units, respectively
- Dingaling: A neutral approach by holding 3 CryptoPunks and 20 Meebits. The overwhelming interest in Bored Ape Yacht Club seems to hint at more favorable sentiment toward Yuga Labs
- Pranksy: No CryptoPunks and sold 96 Meebits in August 2021. leaving one Meebit in their wallet.
On the topic of supporting new and upcoming projects, whales tend to diversify their portfolio to the best of their ability. Supporting new projects is crucial as it helps the NFT industry grow and expand. New projects receiving attention from the whales include Killer GFs, CryptoBatz, Mfers, and Party Degenerates.
The research by DappRadar into these matters provides valuable insights into the behaviour of NFT whales. It also showcases their different approaches to different projects, whether established or brand new. Diversification is crucial for NFT whales, just like it is for cryptocurrency whales. Despite their different approaches, there are some exciting parallels to be drawn.
Growing exposure to the metaverse shows that is the big industry to focus on moving forward. Moreover, exposure to land plots remains a popular option to explore. Additionally, it remains crucial to keep an eye on new projects, although all three whales seem to invest in the same projects – for the most part.
Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.