MonkeDAO, an independent community of Solana Monkey Business (SMB) holders, has officially acquired the IP of said NFT project for $2 million.
The community of investors bought the SMB IP, related keys, accounts and assets from Solana NFT exchange Hadeswap. HadesDAO governance proposal, approved by almost 97 percent of token-based votes, authorized the acquisition.
— MonkeDAO🍌 (@MonkeDAO) April 20, 2023
Pseudonymous MonkeDAO CEO and co-founder Nom described the buyout as a “great resolution” for the community. According to Nom, the IP acquisition enabled the community to showcase its “ownership and responsibility for the leadership” of the NFT project.
Nom also said MonkeDAO’s plan for the future is to represent the “best” community of developers, founders, builders and degenerates in the Solana blockchain.
“We are dedicated to pushing not only better experiences and opportunities to our members, but also to expand what it means to be a part of MonkeDAO,” Nom said.
This February, Hadeswap announced that it had bought the IP of SMB from the original creators for an undisclosed value. The marketplace at that time said it planned to expand the IP and “[bridge] the gap on its shortcomings” through HadesDAO.
Hadeswap also planned to integrate SMB within the exchange platform and its native token ecosystem, HADES. The exchange argued that it would make the project more accessible to the broader public.
MonkeDAO members pushed back against Hadeswap’s initiative, saying that the proposed plan did not align with the governance incentives agreed upon in the previous voting tied to ownership of NFTs in the collection.
0/ What a wild week it has been. The SMB acquisition story….
It started out with the new SMB team run by HadesDAO posting language around their vision on moving @SolanaMBS forward. Monkes saw them mentioning Gen3 and freaked out a bit… pic.twitter.com/EEpoLBhqOx
— S◎L Big Brain (@SOLBigBrain) April 11, 2023
Pseudonymous NFT whale SOL Big Brain revealed on Twitter that he provided a $1 million bridge loan to MonkeDAO to kickstart the buyout process of the SMB OP with Hadeswap.
According to Big Brain, Hadeswap’s pseudonymous founder HGE did not want to prolong the dispute with MonkeDAO and chose to sell the collection.
Hadeswap, currently Solana’s second largest NFT exchange platform, utilizes an automated market maker (AMM) instead of a conventional product listing. NFT trading happens in liquidity pools, earning trading fees for pool creators while disabling royalties.
The mechanism boosts liquidity for trading “floor” NFTs or the cheapest NFTs within the collection. Analysts said platforms like Hadeswap had increased the popularity of royalty-free exchange, which makes NFT trading more inclusive to all investors.
SMB rising popularity
SMB was one of the earliest notable NFT projects on the Solana blockchain, introduced in June 2021 with a small number of Gen1 NFTs depicting a monkey in space. It rose to fame after dropping its Gen2 collection, which comprised 5,000 NFT profile pictures.
The Gen2 collection has posted around $164 million worth of trading volume as of today, per CryptoSlam. According to Magic Eden data, the price of an NFT from the collection starts at slightly over 200 SOL, or around $4,375, at secondary markets. The starting price is the second highest for any large-scale NFT project on Solana after DeGods.
SMB holders soon formed the MonkeDAO community after the Gen2 launch. They have held various in-person events, collectively invested in startups and overseen a DAO-managed Solana blockchain validator.
There was a rife between MonkeDAO and the original pseudonymous creators of the NFT collection. The DAO asked for a share of secondary market royalties to support initiatives it believed had increased the project’s value. However, MonkeDAO claimed that the creators only delivered a fraction of promised funding.
Sources reported that MonkeDAO members had considered “wrapping” their SMB NFTs as new tokens early last year. This process would direct royalties to the DAO treasury instead of the creators.
The two parties eventually agreed to the funding before Hadeswap bought the IP from the creators.