Monthly NFT sales fell for fifth consecutive month to $495M in July



Welcome back to Chain Reaction. To get a roundup of TechCrunch’s biggest and most important crypto stories delivered to your inbox every Thursday at 12 p.m. PT, subscribe here. The NFT space isn’t doing too well right now. Although it seems like there’s a new project being launched every week, there’s less and less money being spent in the space. In July, NFT sales totaled $495.6 million, down 23% from $646.1 million in June, according to data from NFT aggregator CryptoSlam. This marks the fifth consecutive month of NFT sales falling since February, when the sector saw sales hit $1.2 billion. July recorded the lowest level since April 2021, which saw sales plummet to $339.4 million, a few months before the NFT boom began in July 2021. 


Today’s decline could be attributed to a number of factors, like consumers buying NFTs for less — the average sale in July was just $47, meaning fewer people are interested in “blue-chip” NFTs. It’s worth noting that transaction levels have remained high in the past couple of months — June had about 10.8 million transactions and July had about 10.4 million, the highest levels since February 2022. The decline in sales doesn’t necessarily mean NFTs are going bye-bye. Instead, it points to the growing prevalence of low-barrier NFT sales and the space becoming more accessible to general audiences, who may not want to spend a lot on NFTs right away. In the past 30 days, the top three blockchains to sell the most NFTs were Ethereum at $293 million, Bitcoin at $56.2 million and Solana at $35 million, per CryptoSlam data. Only two NFTs –— a Bored Ape Yacht Club and a CryptoPunk — were sold for over $1 million during that time. Regardless of how you look at it, the decline in NFT sales means the players and builders in the sector have to look for new opportunities to grow again. It’s time to sink or swim. This week in web3 Developers continue to dive into the crypto space as market remains lackluster Curve Finance’s $62M exploit exposes larger issues for DeFi ecosystem SEC sues Richard Heart and his projects Hex, PulseChain and PulseX for fraud, securities violations Global web3 venture funding on pace to decline for seventh straight quarter Kenya suspends Worldcoin scans over security, privacy and financial concerns Sequoia Capital cuts crypto, ecosystem funds by over 50% as it continues to downsize Worldcoin’s official launch triggers swift privacy scrutiny in Europe The latest pod For this week’s news episode, Jacquelyn sits down with Jesse Pollak, lead for Base and head of protocols at Coinbase. You might remember him from an interview we did with him back in April. Coinbase, which is the second-largest crypto exchange by trading volume, launched Base, an Ethereum-focused layer-2 (L2) blockchain, in February. 


The platform was in testnet, which is a test phase of the blockchain network, until mid-July, when it launched its mainnet, the fully live version of a blockchain on the main network (hence the name: mainnet) to developers. Next week, Base is officially launching its mainnet to the public on August 9, alongside its “Onchain Summer” initiative. We dive into what’s going on, why it matters, where Pollak sees Base going in the future and why he’s keeping an eye on the bigger layer-2 ecosystem. Subscribe to Chain Reaction on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or your favorite pod platform to keep up with the latest episodes, and please leave us a review if you like what you hear! Follow the money Solv Protocol raised $6 million to expand its institutional DeFi platform Blockchain solutions developer HashPort raised $8.5 million in its Series C Futureverse launched $50 million venture fund and studio Born Ready This list was compiled with information from Messari as well as TechCrunch’s own reporting. What else we’re reading Want to branch out from the world of web3? Here are some articles on TechCrunch that caught our attention this week. Not all early-stage AI startups are created equal Uber is now a profitable, cash-generating machine Elon Musk is probably right about one thing Reed Jobs, son of Steve Jobs, takes the wraps off a $200 million venture fund that will back new cancer treatments A comprehensive list of 2023 tech layoffs


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