“Off brand” Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) NFTs are selling on eBay for just £34.99 ($47).
Some of the listings are titled “BAYC,” and there is also a striking resemblance to the originals. But a dig deeper reveals these non-fungibles are from the much less desirable Sweet Ape Yacht Club (SAYC) collection.
SAYC is available to buy on OpenSea starting from 0.0007 ETH (£1.50), representing a 2,200% arbitrage opportunity for the eBay seller.
Imitation NFTs are the sincerest form of flattery
BAYC is a collection of 10,000 bored ape collectibles living on the Ethereum blockchain. Each ape was algorithmically generated from over 170 different traits. They went on sale in April 2021 for 0.08 ETH (around $200 at the time).
Since then, BAYC has gone on to become the leading NFT collection (with CryptoPunks coming in second), establishing a floor price of 88.5 ETH (approx $258,700).
Famous celeb owners include Mark Cuban, Steph Curry, Justin Bieber, and Snoop Dogg, to name a few. In turn, A-list celebrity endorsement has only made BAYC more desirable.
As the hottest NFTs around, copycats are inevitable. Last December saw Opensea ban “Phunky Ape Yacht Club” (PAYC) and “PHAYC.”
PAYC sold itself on a Robin Hood rhetoric, saying it wanted to bring apes back to the people and away from “rich d*uchebags.” Similarly, PHAYC also marketed itself satirically, suggesting NFTs are taken way too seriously.
Although SAYC is “inspired” by BAYC, PAYC and PHAYC took things a step too far by copying the original BAYC exactly then flipping the image to face the left.
eBay to go full crypto?
eBay has long had a reputation for passing on inferior and counterfeit products. But is selling SAYC NFTs on the platform wrong?
BAYC creators Yuga Labs filed a complaint to get PAYC and PHAYC booted off the OpenSea platform. But there are no clear global laws governing how NFT copyright works. In short, copycats may be morally dubious yet legally acceptable.
Either way, the auction website recently announced it might accept cryptocurrency as a payment option and is looking at ways to facilitate NFT sales.
The current SAYC listings require the seller the manually send the NFT to an address communicated by the buyer after purchase.
eBay would likely adopt a process similar to existing NFT marketplaces, where the owner creates a listing and links their wallet containing the non-fungible for sale. That way, the selling process happens automatically.
Observers expect more details on eBay Investor Day 2022, March 10, which will feature presentations from senior eBay execs.
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