MoonPay unveils partnerships as it ventures to NFTs
MoonPay, a crypto payments startup, has announced its partnership with key entertainment brands in an effort to expand into the nonfungible token (NFT) market. By using MoonPay’s HyperMint platform, companies like Creative Artists Agency, Death Row Records, Universal Pictures, and Fox Corp. Will create corresponding NFTs.
According to the firm’s CEO, Ivan Soto-Wright, “You can essentially program anything into these NFTs over time, which is why we decided to focus on this new product offering. That’s really making this shift possible; to go beyond collectability and program utility into these NFTs and there needs to be enterprise-grade tooling”.
While MoonPay has not specified on the type of NFTs that the entertainment brands will create, Soto-Wright stated that they are eyeing fashion, sports, gaming, music, and film. For instance, through its partnership with the crypto startup, Universal Pictures may create NFTs linked to their movie releases. Similarly, in the music sub-sector, NFTs could further benefit artists in the monetization of their craft.
MoonPay’s decision comes at a time when the cryptocurrency market remains on a downtrend. The ongoing economic turmoil and subsequent risk-off sentiment saw Bitcoin- the largest crypto by means of market capitalization, drop to $17,588.99 late last week. At that level, it was at its lowest level since December 2020. While it has since bounced off those lows, it remains about 70% below the all-time high it hit in November 2021 at $69,086.80.
Seeing that BTC often sets the trend for the altcoins, cryptos such as Ethereum and Ripple have also declined by 77.24% and 75.81% since November 2021 respectively. Notably, the crypto downturn has further spilled to NFT sales. According to CryptoSlam, an NFT data tracker, NFT global sales drop by 35% in May compared to January.
While acknowledging the downturn, Soto-Wright believes that NFTs are still in a position to grow. Through HyperMint, MoonPay hopes to use the technology for more real-world applications. Some of its current applications include the online gaming-related NFTs that have resulted from the firm’s partnership with FaZe Clan- an esports entity. Besides, it has digital clothing NFTs linked to Selfridges & Co department store chain.