What’s Happening at Yuga Labs?

yuga labs

TL;DR
Despite the slump in the NFT markets, Bored Ape Yacht Club creator Yuga Labs remains busy. Recently, Yuga has launched licensing and authentication platform Made by Apes, held a live demo of its Otherside metaverse and gaming project, and acquired Roar Studios. Prices on Yuga Labs’ key NFT collections remain well down from all-time highs, in line with the trend across most NFT collections.

It may have been a tough few months for NFTs in general, but that hasn’t stopped Yuga Labs–creator of Bored Ape Yacht Club–from continuing to build and expand, so let’s get an update on the latest developments from the biggest outfit in NFTs, and consider whether its famous JPEGs are worth picking up at current prices.

Made by Apes

Yuga Labs
Image credit: Yuga Labs

Bored Ape Yacht Club has always provided its holders with commercial rights over NFT images in their possession, leading to ape-oriented businesses such as the Bored & Hungry restaurant, Ape Beverages, and Mutant Grape Wine Club.

Now though, the new Made by Apes platform takes this a step further, letting holders who create an ape-utilizing business or product register their enterprise and receive a unique, on-chain license number, after which they can add special Made by Apes branding, indicating authenticity.

Yuga Labs
Image credit: Yuga Labs

A further benefit for Made by Apes-branded projects, besides authentication, is inclusion in an upcoming Yuga Labs directory called The Bodega, which can potentially provide brand amplification and be advantageous from a marketing point of view.

Made by Apes has been launched in collaboration with SaaSyLabs blockchain protocol, and several businesses are already onboard at launch.

Newest Otherside Demo

Yuga Labs
Image credit: Yuga Labs

Central to Yuga Labs’ future plans is the development of Otherside, a virtual environment that seems to be positioned somewhere between a fantasy gaming world and a metaverse, with virtual land ownership made possible through Otherdeed NFTs.

If that sounds a little vague, with an unclear purpose, that’s partly because the entire metaverse concept is itself a little vague, but Yuga Labs has been emphasizing the social aspect of Otherside through its trips experiences, in which thousands of users (called voyagers) have participated in demos, to largely positive feedback.

Last week, another demo was held, but this time on a smaller scale, allowing entry to 40 guests at an in-person on-stage event in Los Angeles for, as Yuga put it, “a vibe check”. Guests could play as avatars of their BAYC assets, and the event served as a reminder that whatever might be happening in the NFT markets as a whole, Yuga has the resources to keep building.

Roar Studios Acquisition

Roar Studios
Image credit: Roar Studios

As a further part of its strategy to build Otherside into a high quality gaming and metaverse environment, Yuga announced at the end of July that it had acquired Roar Studios.

While Roar itself might not be the most familiar name, it’s a solid acquisition that is focused on a combination of music, gaming, AI and social technology, all of which sounds like a perfect fit for what Yuga is working towards.

In 2021, Roar raised $7 million in funding to build what was described as a music metaverse (not forgetting that metaverse was a key buzzword at that time), and Roar’s CEO and founder Eric Reid will now join Yuga as the general manager of Otherside. Reid looks like a valuable addition to the Yuga team with, prior to founding Roar, a career that includes acting as the co-CEO of well-known film production company Lakeshore Entertainment.

Are Current Yuga Prices Good Value?

Yuga Labs
Image credit: Yuga Labs

In line with the rest of the NFT space, Yuga’s NFT collections have seen some big drops in their floor prices. BAYC–the original 10K collection–has dropped from over 80 ETH around the start of this year (and over 150 ETH at its peak), to around 30 ETH at the moment, with secondary collection MAYC, and Otherdeeds–which represent land in the Otherside metaverse–experiencing comparable falls over the course of this year.

These price swings come as NFT markets overall experience limited participation, with daily NFT sales at the beginning of August registering at only around the 25 to 26 thousand range, while the number of wallets transacting with marketplaces is at around 13 to 14 thousand, daily. To put that in context, consider that Yuga’s BAYC, MAYC and Otherdeed collections alone contain between them a total of 130,000 NFTs.

NFT data
Charts from Nansen

That doesn’t look too great, but when it comes down to it, crypto in 2022 experienced a brutal crash, and it’s no surprise if NFTs, as the newest and most volatile part of the crypto world, are now taking a beating.

It’s also true that BTC and ETH in particular have seen substantial recoveries this year, while for NFTs the situation has only been getting worse, but still, it’s not unlikely that some NFT projects survive and see renewed interest in the next crypto bull run.

As for which projects: it sometimes makes sense to simply bet on the biggest and most visible competitor, which, in the world of NFTs, means Yuga Labs. And in the Yuga Labs ecosystem, the key items are the original BAYC and MAYC collections, and also Otherdeeds, which represent Otherside land.

One more thing to remember, looking at the wider picture, is that while current prices are down a lot from their peak, they’re also up a lot from a mint price–just a little over two years ago–of 0.08 ETH. As ever, perspective is critical.

What's Happening at Yuga Labs? - - 2024

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What's Happening at Yuga Labs? - - 2024
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