Sound Ventures, a venture capital fund comprising celebrities, musicians and a billionaire, is offering at least $1 million for the “most innovative” idea for a nonfungible token over the next week.
Announced on Monday, the event invites anyone from around the world to pitch their NFT project to a team of eight judges before April 12. According to the competition page, it doesn’t matter if the pitches are little more than an idea or a fully fledged product already on the market. The wording also suggests the contest’s winners will have the opportunity to work alongside Sound Ventures long term.
“Those applying should be interested in building a company over the long-term,” the announcement says.
Up to 30 finalists will be selected to partake in a private live pitch with the judges on April 21, just over two weeks from now.
Those selected are not required to accept the investment, and there are no set terms for how the investment will be distributed. The contest’s FAQ states: “Investment amounts and terms will vary by company.”
It is not clear how many pitches will be selected from the 30 finalists, but the competition page suggests the investments across those selected could total more than $1 million.
Sound Ventures’ co-founders, famous actor Ashton Kutcher and talent manager Guy Oseary, will sit on the judging panel with the remaining six judges including NBA Dallas Mavericks owner and billionaire Mark Cuban, rapper Snoop Dogg, EDM artist 3LAU, NFT investors Whale Shark and MetaKovan, and Scalar Capital co-founder Linda Xie.
Whale Shark and Metakovan, although not well known as some of the other judges, are some of the most respected in the NFT space. Whale Shark recently tokenized a vault containing their NFT collection, allowing investors to buy into it. It currently has a market cap of almost $23 million. MetaKovan, or Vignesh Sundaresan, is the winner of Beeple’s $69-million Christie’s auction last month and a prominent NFT collector.
The contest was set up by Sound Ventures’ Kutcher and Oseary. Oseary’s clients include U2 and long-time business partner Madonna. The pair also run VC firm A-Grade Investments, which has a history of supporting successful projects, such as Airbnb, Foursquare, Shazam, SoundCloud, Spotify and Uber.
Kutcher has already made a questionable name for himself in the NFT sector, auctioning a digital copy of a notebook scribble in August 2020. The original drawing was destroyed to showcase the advantages of digital over physical artworks, with the funds raised said to go toward ecological conservation nonprofits.
The artwork titled “The Eye of The Beholder” was sold for 20 Ether (ETH) (currently worth $42,600) in the auction.