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A television crew is seen next to the non-fungible token "CryptoPunk #7523", a series of 10,000 unique pixel-art characters made by Larva Labs in 2017 in New York City, US, in this June 4 2021 file photo. Picture: REUTERS/SHANNON STAPLETON
A television crew is seen next to the non-fungible token "CryptoPunk #7523", a series of 10,000 unique pixel-art characters made by Larva Labs in 2017 in New York City, US, in this June 4 2021 file photo. Picture: REUTERS/SHANNON STAPLETON

Are non-fungible tokens (NFTs) still relevant and valuable in 2022? That is the focus in this edition of the Business Day Spotlight. 

Our host Mudiwa Gavaza is joined by Adam Romyn, co-founder of NFT social marketplace Momint. 

Founded along with Ahren Posthumus and Joshua Minsk, and backed by businessman Rob Hersov, Momint is a marketplace where digital content creators can, among a host of services, sell their work using NFTs. 

The discussion focuses on dynamics in the SA’s NFT market.

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Having had a lot of attention and notoriety during the pandemic, NFT’s appear to have lost their lustre. Just as the broader cryptocurrency market has taken a hit in recent weeks and months, so too has the market for NFTs.

Bloomberg reported earlier in the week that its NFT Index saw a 23% decline as bitcoin prices reached an 18-month low

But Romyn disagrees, arguing that the market is actually growing in SA. He explains what the market looks like beyond the hype. 

NFTs are cryptographic assets on a blockchain — the technology that underpins cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin —  with unique identification codes and metadata that distinguish them from each other. Unlike cryptocurrencies, they cannot be traded or exchanged at equivalency. Owing to that non-fungibility, it is said that NFTs are an ideal way to digitally represent physical assets such as real estate and artwork.

Romyn details some of the cases for the technology in SA, such as smart contracts for raising project funding, as well as real estate ownership and use in the market for carbon credits. 

Topics of discussion include: Momint’s business model; use cases for NFTs in SA; whether growth in the market has indeed stalled; practical uses of blockchain technologies; smart contracts; and an outlook for the market. 

In March 2022, Momint hosted Africa’s largest NFT auction, to date, where it sold Nelson Mandela’s original arrest warrant for $130,000 (R2.4m).  

Engage on Twitter at #BDSpotlight

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Business Day Spotlight is a MultimediaLIVE production.

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