Yuga Labs made 733 BTC in the debut Bitcoin NFT Twelvefold auction
Yuga Labs, the firm behind the Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT collection, has made 733 BTC, equivalent to $16.5M, in its first Bitcoin NFT auction, the TwelveFold collection, on March 6, 2023.
A massive success despite the auction controversy
The collection had 288 NFTs, with the top three bids at 7.12 BTC ($159,954), 7 BTC ($156,963.8), and 4.12 BTC ($92,384). The lowest winning bid was 2.25 BTC($50,400.4), and the average winning bid was 2.55 BTC($112359.6).
The Twelvefold inscription has 300 NFTs, 288 were auctioned, and 12 were reserved for the contributors and future philanthropic efforts and donations. Yuga Labs published the leaderboard with each winning user address and the BTC bid and will publish a directory that follows the inscription process.
The Bitcoin-Ethereum controversy
The Twelvefold collection launch was surrounded by controversy since the project was set to exploit the Bitcoin blockchain, and the Yuga Labs’ $10.3B NFT ecosystem is built on the Ethereum blockchain.
However, the Twelvefold project is independent of the Ethereum framework and is based on the Ordinals, a protocol that inscribes digital assets permanently on satoshis on the Bitcoin network.
Since Ordinals is a new project, there is yet to be a ready marketplace for the NFTs inscribed on satoshis. In addition, Bitcoin lacks the smart contract capacity to facilitate the development of OpenSea equivalent for Bitcoin-based NFT marketplaces.
The user needed two wallets to place bids on the Twelvefold NFTs: a Yuga Labs-controlled wallet where they transferred the Bitcoin and an empty self-custody wallet where Yuga Labs would send the Twelvefold inscriptions.
The receiving wallet should be an empty bitcoin address to avoid the risk of transferring the inscribed satoshis in regular transactions, as wallets do not support the transaction of individual satoshis. The user needed to trust Yuga Labs to make the transfer if they won the bid or get a refund if they lost.
The Twelvefold auction is ‘a scammer’s dream’
Users expressed their views on the process, with one saying that ‘we’re still in the stone age.’ Another user said that Yuga labs are ‘setting a bad example with its bidding process.’ He called the process ‘a scammer’s dream’ although he was positive that Yuga Labs would refund all unsuccessful bids.
Casey Rodarmor, the Ordinals founder, agreed with the user and said that such actions prove that some people and entities, “Once a shitcoiner always a shitcoiner.” Rodarmor promised to disassociate himself from Yuga Labs if ‘Yuga labs, the entity, fuck around with degenerate bullshit like this again.’
The managing director and head of research at Galaxy Digital, Alex Thorn, said Having Bitcoin as the backbone of the Ordinals’ infrastructure ecosystem, combined with Yuga Lab’s reputation and size, allowed the Twelvefold auction to succeed. However, this is not the best path for future mints and auctions, which might not be underwritten by industry big shots such as Yuga Labs.
In the same breath, Yuga Labs might have dragged Bitcoin into its regulatory battles as the Bored Ape is under SEC’s investigations.
Despite the controversies, the adoption of Bitcoin NFTs by NFT giants like Yuga Labs sets the NFT market for future good news. Research predicts that the NFT industry will be worth $4.5B by 2025, likely to excite investors.