Can the drops in the crypto market usher in a new wave of NFTs?

How the decline in the crypto market presents a chance for novel NFT types to emerge

By Fernanda De La Torre

Crypto markets down, new wave of NFTs to rise?

Traditional and blockchain markets have taken a collective hit in the last few months. Bitcoin dropped by almost 38% in the last month.¹ Ethereum was down 77% over the last couple of weeks, hovering around $1,200 as opposed to its all-time high of $4,892.² The NFT market, which relies primarily on the Ethereum network and the Ether cryptocurrency has also dropped down to record lows. NFT sales reached just over $1 billion in June, compared with the peak of $12.6 billion in January.³

Despite the dip, NFTs are still a billion-dollar market. Their initial rise to fame introduced the concepts of digital ownership and online presence through blockchain technology in a way that was familiar to those outside of the crypto-sphere.

Every day new headlines appeared covering record-breaking NFT sales like Beeple’s $69 million-dollar NFT. Familiar brands entered the market with Adidas selling more than $22 million in NFTs⁴, and the world was introduced to the social media craze that is PFP NFTs which included CryptoPunks and Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs which have sold as high as $2.8 million.⁵

Athletes, celebrities, and brands continue to jump in to get a piece of the action. The dilemma? Many of these headlining NFTs sell for thousands, if not millions of dollars leaving out the masses.

On top of that, while the idea of a digital collectible made sense without a complete understanding of how blockchains work, there were still hurdles to purchase or claim these NFTs. In order to participate on a traditional NFT platform you must:

1. Open a crypto wallet like MetaMask

2. Go to another cryptocurrency exchange to purchase crypto like Ether

3. Transfer the Ether to your crypto wallet

4. Connect your crypto wallet to the NFT platform

5. Buy the NFT and pay gas fees regardless of whether a bid is accepted.

Fans used to a seamless web 2.0 experience can be easily lost or discouraged trying to navigate this space.

A new wave of NFTs

With the first NFT frenzy slowing down, we believe room will be made for more accessible NFTs focused on utility, fan engagement, and dynamic experiences. For example, Ticket NFTs that give holders access to exclusive events such as concerts, museums, livestreams, and so on. NFTs that not only act as a commemorative moment but that also serve as an access pass to a virtual meet and greet to give fans the opportunity to connect further with their favorite public figure.

This new wave of NFTs has already started to be implemented by major brands. Recently Coachella released a collection of ten NFTs that granted holders lifetime access to their annual festival as well as any other virtual experiences they may offer in the future. Nike has also started to include NFTs with the purchase of limited-edition sneakers.

Upstream has been working on new innovative ways to add utility to NFTs. One of those new ways is by creating proof of authenticity NFTs. Our recent partnership with Ruffnation Entertainment, the pioneering hip-hop label that discovered Cypress Hill, Nas, the Fugees, Lauryn Hill, and other major hip-hop artists, will give vinyl records authentication and immutable ownership through the NFT attached to it.

NFTs for all

Over the last few weeks, we’ve welcomed groups like NBA Hall of Famer Dominique Wilkins, NFL Hall of Famer Edgerrin James, Antrel Rolle, BRON Studios, Ruffnation Entertainment, and more into Upstream’s ecosystem. We’re building a community of NFTs that’s accessible to the masses and is easy to use. Unlike the traditional NFT platform steps listed above, all you need to do to participate on Upstream is:

  1. Download: Simply download Upstream and tap Sign Up

We have truly simplified the process of participating in the NFT market and have remained carbon neutral thanks to our own solar field, which mines all the ETH used for our Ethereum layer-2 rollups. Upstream is committed to making the market more inclusive by offering low-cost NFTs that bring fans closer to their favorite athletes and celebrities.

Keep up with our upcoming opportunities by following us on all our social media platforms and by joining our discord that’s linked below:


1 CoinDesk | 2 Fool | 3 The Guardian|4 The Verge| 5 Crypto Briefing

About Upstream:

Upstream, a MERJ Exchange Market, is a fully regulated global stock exchange for digital securities. Powered by Horizon’s proprietary matching engine technology, the exchange will enable investors to trade NFTs, shares in IPOs, crowdfunded companies, U.S. & Int’l. equities, and celebrity ventures directly from the app: Interested issuers can reach the team at

About MERJ:

MERJ Exchange (MERJ) operates Upstream as a fully regulated and licensed integrated securities exchange, clearing system and depository for digital and non-digital securities. MERJ is an affiliate of the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE), recognized by HM Revenue and Customs UK, a full member of the Association of National Numbering Agencies (ANNA) and a Qualifying Foreign Exchange for OTC Markets in the US. MERJ is also a member of the Sustainable Stock Exchanges Initiative. Visit to learn more.

About Horizon:

Horizon is a fintech company that builds and powers global securities exchanges with an integrated suite of software for compliant issuance, management, and secondary trading of securities. Our in-house solutions combine Wall Street and Silicon Valley to power the next generation of securities offerings and trading in the U.S. and globally. Learn more at


This press release shall not constitute an offer to sell securities or the solicitation of an offer to buy securities in any jurisdiction where such offer or solicitation is not permitted.

*NFTs received have no economic value, royalties, equity ownership, or dividends. NFTs are for utility, collection, and display only.

*U.S. investors are not permitted to trade in upstream listed securities. U.S. and Canadian citizens will only be able to trade in a security they currently own that has listed on upstream for liquidation only.

Upstream is a MERJ Exchange market. MERJ Exchange is a licensed Securities Exchange, an affiliate of the World Federation of Exchanges and full member of ANNA. MERJ supports global issuers of traditional and digital securities through the entire asset life cycle from issuance to trading, clearing, settlement and registry. It operates a fair and transparent marketplace in line with international best practice and principles of operations of financial markets. Upstream does not endorse or recommend any public or private securities bought or sold on its app. Upstream does not offer investment advice or recommendations of any kind. All services offered by Upstream are intended for self-directed clients who make their own investment decisions without aid or assistance from Upstream. All customers are subject to the rules and regulations of their jurisdiction. By accessing the site or app, you agreed to be bound by its terms of use and privacy policy. Company and security listings on Upstream are only suitable for investors who are familiar with and willing to accept the high risk associated with speculative investments, often in early and development stage companies. There can be no assurance the valuation of any particular company’s securities is accurate or in agreement with the market or industry comparative valuations. Investors must be able to afford market volatility and afford the loss of their investment. Companies listed on Upstream are subject to significant ongoing corporate obligations including, but not limited to disclosure, filings and notification.



A MERJ Exchange Market. Ethereum-powered exchange for digital securities and NFTs

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A MERJ Exchange Market. Ethereum-powered exchange for digital securities and NFTs