Since its launch last night, Solana NFT project y00ts have dominated secondary markets, with NFTs selling for a significant premium over the mint price. Amid the rollout’s hype, the Web3 tech company Dust Labs associated with the project has raised a seed round from some notable investors.
Dust Labs has raised $7 million in venture capital in funds
Dust Labs, a tech startup linked to y00ts and the popular DeGods NFT project, has raised $7 million in venture capital funding from various firms. FTX Ventures and Solana Ventures participated in the round, as did top Solana NFT marketplace Magic Eden, Solana NFT protocol maker Metaplex, and Foundation Capital and Jump firms.
The company arose from the success of DeGods, the most valuable NFT profile picture (PFP) project on the Solana blockchain. The creator of DeGods, Frank, founded it, but it has its CEO (Kevin) and is focused on “building software that helps NFT communities bring more value to their holders,” according to the website.
Dust Labs, according to Frank, is a “tech company spun off” from the DeGods project rather than a parent company like Yuga Labs and the Bored Ape Yacht Club. Dust Labs, for example, is credited with creating the y00ts minting website.
Dust Labs’ DUST utility token debuted as a reward for DeGods holders, and it is the only token buyers can use to mint a y00ts NFT during the prior sale. Magic Eden will also accept the token because it integrates Solana-based tokens from various NFT projects.
An NFT is a blockchain token representing ownership of items such as PFPs, artwork, collectibles, or video game items. After Ethereum, Solana has the second-largest NFT ecosystem.
y00ts made its debut late Sunday with 15,000 Solana-based collectibles.
The NFTs were available for purchase by DeGods holders and those who had recently been accepted to an exclusive whitelist, including celebrities such as soccer legend Wayne Rooney and comedian Howie Mandel.
Each NFT issued by the mint is known as a “t00b,” and it can be burned (or permanently destroyed) in exchange for the y00ts NFT, which is a profile picture. That process is set to begin on September 9, but it’s unclear whether delays in the initial NFT mint will impact that date.
It costs 375 DUST to mint a t00b NFT, which was worth about $875 at the start of the mint last night but is now worth about $915 as of this writing. Anyone on the y00tlist can mint until 5 p.m. ET today for 19 hours, though the creators said they might extend the window due to technical difficulties last night. DeGods owners can mint y00ts NFTs at any time, though the mint price is set to rise gradually over time.
According to Hyperspace, an NFT marketplace aggregator and Dust Labs investor, y00ts has already generated more than $6 million in secondary sales. The current floor price, or the cost of the cheapest-available NFT listed on a marketplace, is 139 SOL, or around $4,400. On Magic Eden, 96% of secondary sales have occurred.
According to data from OpenSea, the leading marketplace for all blockchain networks, y00ts surpassed Ethereum Name Service as the top-selling NFT project across secondary markets last night. According to OpenSea’s rankings, y00ts is not only the top-selling NFT project in the last 24 hours but also the last week.
Initially scheduled for September 2, the y00ts launch was postponed due to recent hiccups, including temporary bans of the y00ts and DeGods accounts on Twitter last week and a late “blocker bug” on Sunday prior to the planned deployment. Issues during the mint appeared to be related to the project’s technology rather than the Solana network, which had previously crashed during high-profile NFT launches.