•Yuga Labs has acquired NFT startup WENEW, co-founded by famed artist Mike “Beeple” Winkelmann.
• WENEW has pursued a number of brand collaborations since launching in June 2021, including with Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Playboy, and the Wimbledon tennis tournament.
• The startup is also known for 10KTF, an Ethereum NFT project built around a fictional tailor that creates digital apparel for various high-value profile picture (PFP) projects—including Bored Apes.
• Yuga Labs has acquired the startup and will add WENEW co-founder and CEO Michael Figge as its new Chief Content Officer. Beeple will serve as an advisor to Yuga Labs.
In a move that underscores the growing importance of non-fungible tokens (NFTs), Yuga Labs has acquired WENEW, a startup that has pursued a number of high-profile brand collaborations since launching in June 2021.
The startup is known for 10KTF, an Ethereum NFT project built around a fictional tailor that creates digital apparel for various high-value profile picture (PFP) projects—including Bored Apes. Some of the other notable brands WENEW has collaborated with include KFC, McDonald’s, and Nike.
Yuga Labs has acquired the startup and will add WENEW co-founder and CEO Michael Figge as its new Chief Content Officer. Beeple will serve as an advisor to Yuga Labs. In a statement, Yuga Labs CEO Masaya Sekine said that the acquisition would allow the company to “accelerate [its] entry into the burgeoning NFT space.”
Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are digital assets that are unique and cannot be replaced. They are built on blockchain technology, which allows them to be securely bought, sold, or traded. While NFTs can take many different forms, they are often used to represent digital art, videos, or audio files.
NFTs have been growing in popularity over the past year. In February 2021, NBA Top Shot, an online marketplace for basketball-related NFTs, raised $100 million from VC firms Andreessen Horowitz and DST Global. The same month, Christie’s auction house sold an NFT piece of digital art by Beeple for $69 million—setting a new record for the most expensive work of digital art ever sold.
The WENEW Acquisition
With the acquisition of WENEW, Yuga Labs is positioning itself to be a major player in the NFT space. The addition of Michael Figge as Chief Content Officer will give the company even more expertise in this area. With Beeple on board as an advisor, Yuga Labs is clearly serious about making a mark in the NFT world.
The acquisition of WENEW by Yuga Labs is yet another sign that NFTs are here to stay. With big names like Beeple involved and major brands like McDonald’s collaborating with NFT startups, it’s clear that this is just the beginning of this burgeoning industry. It will be interesting to see how Yuga Labs uses its new capabilities to create innovative and exciting NFT experiences for users worldwide.
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