Biggest NFT drops and sales in 2021

Nonfungible token, or NFT, became such a tech buzzword in 2021 that even Collins Dictionary declared the abbreviation its word of the year and Google searches for NFTs spiked to record levels.

Behind the term is a market that approaches $17 billion, according to Cointelegraph Research. And the NFT marketplace OpenSea is responsible for processing most of these transactions, with a trading volume that recently surpassed $10 billion.

NFTs’ potential reaches far beyond art to include music, sports collectibles and video games, while its utility encompasses ownership as well as exclusive access to unique functions and features.

From CryptoPunks and Beeple’s collage to NBA Top Shot and RTFKT, the following collections stood out, not only in numbers but for their growing communities. As we wrap up 2021, let’s take a look at the top 10 collections and sales in NFTs this year.

CryptoPunks, Larva Labs

CryptoPunks are the OG of NFTs, according to DappRadar. The collection launched back in 2017 before the ERC-721 NFT standard existed. Larva Labs released all 10,000 punks for free to Ethereum users and since then, CryptoPunks’ popularity and value on the secondary market have boomed.

Source: Larva Labs

In June 2021, an alien punk sold at Sotheby’s for $11.75 million. In August, Visa acquired a $150,000 CryptoPunk for its corporate collection and Hollywood agency UTA inked a deal to use CryptoPunks in mainstream media. August 2021 saw a record $400 million spent on CryptoPunks in a single month. In September, Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian attended the Met Gala sporting a CryptoPunk badge.

CryptoPunks has seen the highest trading volume on OpenSea with 756,984 Ether (ETH) ($3.03 billion). Its increasing value and historical relevance makes it the top NFT collection.

Bored Ape Yacht Club, Yuga Labs

The collection with the second highest historical trading volume is Bored Ape Yacht Club, or BAYC, with 266,843 ETH ($1.07 billion).

The core team behind Yuga Labs is made up of four friends who wanted “to make some dope…


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