Welcome to the 21st issue of the NFT Humpday Report, a weekly column covering and providing embedded analysis on the NFT economy’s biggest topics du jour. Brought to you by WIP meetup collaborators and nft42 community hub TokenSmart.
In an interview with Bloomberg last week, billionaire investor Chamath Palihapitiya wowed both the mainstream and the cryptoeconomy by revealing he was working on an NFT portfolio.
Palihapitiya’s been on the bitcoin bandwagon for years, though last summer he admitted he didn’t know what DeFi was. Only a matter of months later and he’s now directly investing in NFTs, meaning he’s gone from being unaware of crypto’s frontiers to seeking muscular exposure to NFTs in short order.
Michael Wong @wongisriteAt the 37min mark of this video, @chamath says that NFT’s (nonfungible tokens most commonly built on #Ethereum) are the next frontier of crypto currencies, and that his firm is going to publicize their NFT and crypto holdings soon 😳 https://t.co/WFB0E4BwvU https://t.co/KYsyzZuJuT
Who he is: Never one to fear taking risks, Palihapitiya fashions himself as the Millennial generation’s Warren Buffett.
He was an early executive at Facebook and later went on to found his own VC fund, Social Capital, which he remains as CEO of today. He’s also the chairman of Virgin Galactic and a minority stakeholder of the NBA’s Golden State Warriors. Now the poster child for special purpose acquisition companies (SPACs) and a rumored contender for California’s governor, Palihapitiya’s profile and the attention he commands in the mainstream have never been more pronounced.
What he said: Palihapitiya told Bloomberg he and an unidentified team were in the process of creating an NFT portfolio ...
“Well, I will be publishing this soon. I am building a fairly sizable portfolio of what are called NFTs, non-fungible tokens, some digital art, some virtual trading cards, and these may sound crazy to some, but I do think that that's the next frontier of digital currency and digital assets. So I have been building a portfolio. My decision is, the team and I will announce it, we will publicize everything we own, and we will make our holdings transparent so that folks can track along and see as we buy and sell things. So that’s coming in a few months."
Speculation booms: Palihapitiya’s comments indicated he was actively buying NFTs, meaning he’s pseudonymously been doing so and will continue doing so until his initial portfolio is completed.
Unsurprisingly, this reality’s set off a flurry of speculation in the NFT ecosystem as to which address/profile he’s been using to stockpile his digital collectibles.
Though no strong leads have emerged yet, the investor did specifically mention digital art and virtual trading cards, so tracking major pseudonymous buys on popular cryptoart platforms like SuperRare and Nifty Gateway or on NBA Top Shots is certainly a starting point here.
A coming NFT frenzy: Zooming out, Palihapitiya is a respected veteran of Silicon Valley and his recent work around SPACs has caught fire on Wall Street. These dynamics give the investor tremendous influence in traditional financial circles.
There’s no question, then, that hundreds of thousands of people are going to learn about NFTs for the first time via Palihapitiya’s growing activities around digital assets in the months and years ahead.
Will every single one of those persons become NFT users? No. Yet a non-trivial amount of them will, and they’ll eventually bring in more users, and those users will bring in more users, and so on and so forth. Alas, Chamath’s embrace is just the latest domino to drop in NFT tech’s surge toward the mainstream!
Thanks for reading the 21st NFT Humpday Report! Check back this time next week for more excellent NFT ecosystem coverage! Cheers🌠