Visa jumps into the NFT craze, buying a ‘CryptoPunk’ for $165,000
Global payments giant Visa revealed Monday it bought CryptoPunk,” one of the thousands of non-fungible token (NFT)-based digital avatars for $165,000. According to the company’s official news-based Twitter account, Visa told its 114,000 followers it paid 49.5 ethereum ($165K) for the Cryptopunk #7610.
The digital art market has exploded in recent months after the report of a single piece of a non-fungible token (NFT) art sold at Christie’s Auction for a record-setting $69.3 million, making it the most expensive digital art ever sold. Since the beginning of 2021, the digital art world has been dominated by human artists, musicians, and creators. Now Visa becomes the latest company to join the NFT craze.
“Over the last 60 years, Visa has built a collection of historic commerce artifacts – from early paper credit cards to the zip-zap machine. Today, as we enter a new era of NFT-commerce, Visa welcomes CryptoPunk #7610 to our collection,” Visa tweeted.
Over the last 60 years, Visa has built a collection of historic commerce artifacts – from early paper credit cards to the zip-zap machine. Today, as we enter a new era of NFT-commerce, Visa welcomes CryptoPunk #7610 to our collection. https://t.co/XoPFfwxUiu
— VisaNews (@VisaNews) August 23, 2021
Also in a blog post, Cuy Sheffield, Head of Crypto at Visa and an NFT enthusiast said, “We think NFTs will play an important role in the future of retail, social media, entertainment, and commerce. To help our clients and partners participate, we need a firsthand understanding of the infrastructure requirements for a global brand to purchase, store, and leverage an NFT.”
CryptoPunks have become a “cultural icon for the crypto community. ith our CryptoPunk purchase, we’re jumping in feet first,” he said. “This is just the beginning of our work in this space.”
NFTs are crypto assets with digital signatures saved on blockchain ledgers that allow someone to verify the ownership and authenticity of items. NFT enables collectors to authenticate, own and trade original, authenticated versions of unique digital goods using blockchain technology.
Meanwhile, tech investors and venture capitalists are also paying close attention to the NFT market. In 2020, the total investments in NFT startups quadrupled to $250 million, according to data from Nonfungible.com, while in the past month alone overall NFT sales volumes exceeded $220 million.