Another rare CryptoPunk has changed hands in a multi-million dollar sale.
Punk #5822, one of just nine Aliens in Larva Labs’ iconic CryptoPunks collection, sold for 8,000 Ethereum last night. At the time of sale, 8,000 Ethereum was worth around $23.7 million.
Deepak Thapliyal, the CEO of blockchain infrastructure company Chain, bought the piece and confirmed his purchase by tweeting a photo of the Punk shortly after.
The $23.7 million price tag makes Punk #5822 the most expensive CryptoPunk, and one of the world’s most valuable NFTs. Previously, the record for the most valuable CryptoPunk NFT was held by Punk #5822, another ultra-rare Alien, which fetched $11.75 million at Sotheby’s last summer. Several other rare Punks, including Aliens and their slightly more common Ape and Zombie counterparts, have sold for millions of dollars over the last few months.
Rare CryptoPunk NFTs like Punk #5822 are seen as treasures in the NFT community owing to their scarcity. More common Punks aren’t quite as valuable, though they still command a pretty hefty price: the cheapest on the market sell for around 70 Ethereum, or just over $200,000, today.
Demand for CryptoPunks surged last year as NFT mania started to take hold in the crypto space and began to pervade the mainstream. Around the time Beeple sold an NFT for $69.34 million at Christie’s, two Alien Punks sold for 4,200 Ethereum apiece, kickstarting the CryptoPunk bull market in earnest. By the end of the summer, Visa had bought its own CryptoPunk and celebrities like Jay-Z were joining the popular trend of using their CryptoPunk NFTs for their social media avatars.
As NFTs drew more attention, CryptoPunks increased in value alongside other NFT collections like Bored Ape Yacht Club. Despite some recent controversy surrounding Larva Labs and its aggressive approach toward shutting down ripoff collections, CryptoPunks has maintained a cult-like status owing partly to their historical significance and the “fair launch” process (Larva Labs gave them away for free in June 2017).
The Punk #5822 comes as many so-called “blue chip” NFT collections trend up while major assets like Bitcoin and Ethereum are trading around 40% off their highs and have looked rocky for weeks. Red hot avatar collections like Bored Ape Yacht Club and Azuki have had a particularly strong start to 2022 with floor prices soaring. Even with many fungible assets seemingly caught in limbo, the NFT bull market still looks to be holding strong.