Bored Apes take on the restaurant and movie business
The Bored Ape Yacht Club, or BAYC, NFT holders own the intellectual property rights to their specific apes and can use the likeness of their ape(s) for commercial purposes. One such BAYC member, Andy Nguyen, decided to open a Bored Ape-themed restaurant aptly named Bored & Hungry in Long Beach, California.
Nguyen is a food entrepreneur who has co-founded various other culinary concepts in the Orange County area. He is the owner of Bored Ape #6184, which he purchased for $267,000, and also owns two Mutant Apes. The opening took place this past weekend and Bored & Hungry is the first restaurant to accept both Ether (ETH) and ApeCoin (APE) as a form of payment.
Nguyen revealed to HypeBeast that his purpose is to "show people that you can create a brand/business out of this IP. Taking away the stigma of, ‘It’s just a jpeg.’”
In other BAYC news, Yuga Labs has partnered with Coinbase to produce a film trilogy featuring the BAYC community. The first movie in the trilogy, with the length of a short, will premiere at the NFT.NYC conference in June.
The official website denominated the upcoming franchise as "The Degen Trilogy" but doesn't offer details as to what it will be about, merely saying “something is coming” and “probably nothing.” Reminiscent of the Yuga Labs' announcement for BAYC’s forthcoming metaverse called Otherside, prospective fans can only connect their Coinbase accounts for now.
Meanwhile, Yuga Labs invited Bored Ape owners to audition for roles in the trilogy by submitting their Apes and an accompanying backstory. If an owner’s Ape is chosen, they are subject to receive a $10,000 licensing fee, paid out in either Bitcoin (BTC) or APE.
iHeartMedia to bring to life NFT characters in a podcast
iHeartMedia, one of the largest radio outlets in the United States, scooped up its own Mutant Ape and multiple NFTs from other prominent collections to herald the company's entrance into Web3. While Axios first reported the news last week, iHeartMedia officially announced on Tuesday the creation of an NFT-based podcast network called the Non-Fun Squad, short for nonfungible. Using the IP of their owned profile picture (PFP) NFT collections, the podcast will center around and use the voices of the characters in the Non-Fun Squad.
iHeart-owned NFTs include CryptoPunk #2821, Mutant Ape #10144, World of Women #7147 and #7730, as well as those from emerging NFT projects, including CrypToadz #5947, Loot for Adventurers #2020, and Quirkies #307 and #1988. This may be the first time that individual NFT characters will be given their own personalities and the opportunity to interact with each other within the media and audio spaces.
iHeartMedia partnered with the crypto platform Anchorage Digital, who tweeted about the announcement.
China’s Sichuan province launches NFT marketplace
Despite the Chinese government's wariness regarding cryptocurrency and NFTs, the Sichuan Province Department of Culture and Tourism in southern China announced they are developing an NFT trading platform. The purpose, they said, is to “encourage the music industry to actively adopt modern technology.” China uses the terms digital collectibles and NFTs interchangeably in the statement.
Reportedly, there already existed a local music NFT platform that the government is now backing, while the local blockchain company will continue to develop the project. Sichuan is allegedly a hot spot for the production of modern Chinese music.
Another NFT project backed by China's Shandong province’s state-run television station revealed its own plans to develop its own blockchain and issue NFTs on its marketplace. Meanwhile, China's popular WeChat messaging app continues to suspend some accounts linked to NFTs and supposed speculative activity.
Other Nifty News
The CryptoVoxels metaverse will be the home of the Spells of Genesis (SoG) trading card exhibit, which is part of a virtual NFT history museum. The SoG game celebrates five years of gameplay and hopes to honor its own rare SoG cards as well as assets from various other popular NFT collections.
A Nansen report found that the rapid growth of the NFT market, which is larger than that of the cryptocurrency market year-to-date, may be due to Blue Chip and Metaverse NFTs sales. The report cites collections like Azuki, Clone X and Doodles that have surged in popularity, and even predicts that the NFT market will reach an $80 million market cap by 2025.