Los Angeles-based creator of the Azuki NFT coin collection, Chiru Labs, plans to raise at least $30 million in an upcoming Series A funding round. Here are the details…
30 billion target for NFT coin
Three people familiar with the fundraising effort confirmed the intended amount, according to The Block. One of these sources suggested that most of the funds have already been committed and that Chiru would be worth between $300 million and $400 million if the round was closed. A fourth person with knowledge of the deal warned that details are yet to be finalized, but they will be soon.
The news comes just a week after Reddit co-founder and NFT enthusiast Alexis Ohanian of NFT producer Doodles raised $54 million in a round led by venture capital firm 776, reaching a valuation of $704 million. On August 30, Proof Collective, the startup behind Moonbirds, raised $50 million in a round led by Andreessen Horowitz (a16z). The creators of Azuki, Doodles and Moonbirds are following in the footsteps of Yuga Labs, creators of the Bored Ape Yacht Club, which raised $450 million on an a16z-led tour in March. Yuga Labs is currently valued at $4 billion, as we reported on Kriptokoin.com.
Sold for over $1 million
The Azuki are depicted in various moods; It is a collection of 10,000 anime characters adorned with accessories such as hats and weapons. About six months ago, a particularly rare item on the set was sold for 420 ETH, which at the time was worth more than one million US dollars. The cheapest Azuki is worth 11.2 ETH (roughly $14,000) today, according to OpenSea data.
The collection is a favorite among the crypto elite. Arthur Cheong, founder of Web3 investment firm DeFiance Capital, uses a rare Azuki as his Twitter profile picture. So did Hong Kong real estate mogul and billionaire Adrian Cheng, who recently bought 101 Azuki NFTs. According to Bloomberg, Cheng is currently raising $200 million to invest in the crypto sector.
There were some problems with the NFT collection
Azuki’s rise was not without incident, however. In May, founder Zagabond published a blog post where they effectively outlined the details of three failed NFT projects they were working on and later abandoned before starting Azuki. On top of that, the average price of an Azuki has dropped from 30 ETH to 10 ETH and has yet to recover. The NFT market, more broadly, has struggled in recent months. Data shows that art and collectibles NFTs have not exceeded $100 million in weekly sales since May. In August last year, sales of the same type of NFTs were close to $1 billion in a single week.