The NFT craze is likely to move in waves. Like any growth trend involving something truly “new”, faith and doubt, hope and fear – they cycle in and out. The promise shows up and the crowd gets excited, and then the energy fades, only to be rediscovered a bit later at an exponentially louder volume.
NFTs were blazing hot earlier this year after a JPEG file by the digital artist Beeple sold for $69 million at Christie’s in March, and then the energy faded. Now, starting in August and picking up in September, the market has been rediscovered in a big way, hitting unprecedented levels.
According to CNN, monthly sales on OpenSea, the top platform for buying and selling NFTs, reached $3.4 billion in August, easily an all-time high, according to data from Dune Analytics. September became the second-best month ever in just four days, with $485 million in sales out of the gates.
Over coming days, we should know the final stats for the month, but the parabolic curve certainly looks set to continue.
This has major implications for stocks in the NFT space, and we look at a few stories tied to interesting opportunities in the space below.
Dave & Buster’s Entertainment Inc (NASDAQ:PLAY) is one of the newest entrants into the NFT space following its press this week. The company traditionally engages in the ownership and operation of entertainment and dining venues under the name Dave & Buster’s. It offers a full menu of entrées and appetizers, a selection of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, and an assortment of entertainment attractions centered around playing games and watching live sports and other televised events.
However, there’s now a new element in this equation.
Dave & Buster’s Entertainment Inc (NASDAQ:PLAY) announced this week the launch of its NFT Digital Collectibles Prize program to provide a unique first-of-its-kind experience to NFT collectors. Starting on September 27th, Dave & Buster’s NFT Digital Collectible coins and cards will be available in Dave & Buster’s locations nationwide and can be claimed as prizes in exchange for tickets won.
“We’re excited to unlock this new opportunity for today’s modern-day collectible at Dave & Buster’s,” said Pete Thornfield, VP Brand Marketing at Dave & Buster’s. “Our innovative approach to the NFT Digital Collectible prize program provides fun through a gamified and immersive experience. For those looking to collect unique, new NFTs, Dave & Buster’s combines the fun of gaming and the fun of collecting, all while unlocking that everyday winning feeling for our guests.”
If you’re long this stock, then you’re liking how the stock has responded to the announcement. PLAY shares have been moving higher over the past week overall, pushing about 7% to the upside on above average trading volume as market participants jump aboard the newest NFT play.
Dave & Buster’s Entertainment Inc (NASDAQ:PLAY) managed to rope in revenues totaling $377.6M in overall sales during the company’s most recently reported quarterly financial data — a figure that represents a rate of top line growth of 642.9%, as compared to year-ago data in comparable terms. In addition, the company is battling some balance sheet hurdles, with cash levels struggling to keep up with current liabilities ($107.8M against $308.9M, respectively).
SFLMAVEN (OTC US:SFLM) is another new player on the NFT playing field, and one that appears to deserve a closer look as the company takes steps to ramp up its NFT strategy.
This is an OTC play, but a very well established one. The company is an experienced auctioneer of luxury goods, raking in over $140 million in sales over the past two decades in the jewelry marketplace.
SFLMAVEN (OTC US:SFLM) advanced further toward its newly established NFT vision this morning with a release that mapped out its interesting strategic path into the space.
“We have every intention of hitting the ground running with what we see as a very natural extension of our strategic vision and expertise,” remarked Joseph Ladin, SFLMaven CEO. “We have been successful for two decades as leaders in auctioning specialty items. The NFT marketplace is just a step in the digital direction from our established foundation. We plan to build this new segment rapidly through a unique strategy that has a foundation in small-batch local artwork.”
According to its release, the Company plans to commission a talented local artist to create a small batch of unique, limited edition digital artwork for sale through auction as NFTs. Management believes this will also help to bring awareness to the potential for the NFT movement to fuel interest in the local art scene.
The SFLMaven NFT division will begin through this local strategy and then expand over time to include additional regional work, eventually growing into a marketplace capable of transactions involving NFTs at significant volume or through regular events.
SFLMAVEN (OTC US:SFLM) CEO Ladin added, “This initial step will serve to get our feet wet in the space. We believe the local NFT strategy has enormous promise as an underrepresented approach to this market. We will have further progress updates on this strategy very soon.”
Funko Inc (NASDAQ:FNKO) has become a core NFT play given its strong pop-culture roots and intellectual property with NFT potential.
The company bills itself as a pop culture consumer products company that engages in designing, sourcing, and distribution of licensed pop culture products. The company’s product lines include media and entertainment content, which comprises movies, TV shows, video games, music, and sports.
Funko Inc (NASDAQ:FNKO) recently announced, together with Macy’s, Inc. (NYSE:M) and in collaboration with Lucasfilm, that a Funko Pop!-inspired balloon featuring the character Grogu (known in pop culture as Baby Yoda), from the beloved Star Wars™ series The Mandalorian™ streaming on Disney+, will fly at this year’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade®.
“The giant balloons in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade have always reflected the very best of pop culture and there is no better example of that than Grogu who has become an instant global sensation,” said Will Coss, Executive Producer, Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. “We are thrilled to collaborate with Funko and Lucasfilm on this Funko Pop! version of the beloved character that is sure to delight legions of Star Wars galaxy fans.”
Even with that news, the action hasn’t really heated up in the stock, with shares moving net sideways over the past week.
Funko Inc (NASDAQ:FNKO) managed to rope in revenues totaling $236.1M in overall sales during the company’s most recently reported quarterly financial data — a figure that represents a rate of top line growth of 140.7%, as compared to year-ago data in comparable terms. In addition, the company is battling some balance sheet hurdles, with cash levels struggling to keep up with current liabilities ($95.5M against $195M, respectively).
Other core stocks in the NFT space that may see interest on this resurgence include Plby Group Inc (NASDAQ:PLBY), Takung Art Co Ltd (NYSEAMERICAN:TKAT), Wisekey International Holding AG – ADR (NASDAQ:WKEY), Oriental Culture Holding Ltd (NASDAQ:OCG), and Liquid Media Group Ltd (NASDAQ:YVR).
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