Gary Vee’s NFTs: A Guide to VeeFriends and the Man Taking Over Web3
In less than a year, VeeFriends has become one of the most influential and unique NFT collections on the market. Tied to the personal and professional brand of Gary Vaynerchuk, VeeFriends launched at a time when similar PFP (profile picture) NFTs like Bored Ape Yacht Club were just beginning to take off.
Yet, perhaps due to the state of the still budding NFT market, Vaynerchuk (professionally known as GaryVee) took a unique approach to his large-scale endeavor that has continued to influence the greater NFT ecosystem.
And on October 4, VeeFriends announced the opening of pre-sales of its first limited series of collectible characters, in a partnership with Macy’s Toys“R”Us (a subsidiary), with the official launch slated for October 17, according to a press release shared with nft now. This move brings the VeeFriends characters into the physical world, in an attempt to bring an online NFT community into the hands of NFT holders.
What is VeeFriends?
Created as a way to bring to life his ambitions of building a community around his creative and business passions via NFTs, GaryVee’s VeeFriends has continued to prosper, providing one of the most successful NFT membership use-cases in existence. VeeFriends is the overarching name of GaryVee’s NFT collection that was released on Tuesday, May 11, 2021. The VeeFriends brand encompasses Mini Drops, Book Games, and a forthcoming large-scale “Series 2” collection all stemming from the inaugural drop of 10,255 VeeFriends tokens.
Within the inaugural collection, or, “Series 1,” exists a special set of tokens referred to as G.O.O. (Gary Originally Owned). These 1,242 tokens (over 12% of the supply) were reserved by GaryVee for his own collection, meaning that only 9,013 NFTs were originally available as part of the Series 1 launch.
Each token within the Series 1 collection is based on one of 268 characters that were originally hand-drawn by Vaynerchuk as representations of human traits that he most admires. Gary Vee’s NFTs also grant their owners a wide variety of incentives.
Who created VeeFriends?
There are few names as influential to the NFT ecosystem as Gary Vaynerchuk, AKA GaryVee. First known as a wine critic turned social media mogul, Vaynerchuk now sits as the chairman of New York-based communications company VaynerX. CEO of VaynerMedia, VaynerSports, and four-time New York Times bestselling author, Gary Vee’s net worth is estimated to be $200 million.
In a year, GaryVee went from NFT collector to creator, even launching VaynerNFT to assist celebrities and brands with their own NFT endeavors.
Now seen as one of the most prolific voices in the NFT space, Vaynerchuk’s influence expands throughout the entirety of the NFT ecosystem. He is regarded as one of the most important figures in NFTs and continues to solidify his position with every expansion of his VeeFriends ecosystem.
An expert in predicting trends, Vaynerchuk believes NFTs will be here for the rest of his life, and that VeeFriends is going to be the project to go down in history.
What’s the purpose and utility of VeeFriends NFTs?
As of October 2022, VeeFriends collection has generated nearly 79,000 ETH (over $240 million) in sales volume via OpenSea. Yet, since launching the first 10,255 VeeFriends, GaryVee had remained adamant that VeeFriends Series 1 was only the beginning.
In August 2021, the VeeFriends community got the first glimpse at what he meant with the announcement of Book Games. Then, only two months later, the VeeFriends roster expanded yet again with Mini Drops. And in October of 2022, VeeFriends’ debuted physical products of the plush characters, including Willful Wizard, Adventurous Astronaut, Practical Peacock, Genuine Giraffe, Empathy Elephant, Heart Trooper, Gratittude Gorilla, Common Sense Cow, and Be the Bigger Person.
VeeFriends’ partnership with Macy’s will reveal each characters’ backstory
In a notable deployment of use-cases, every VeeFriends physical product comes with a printed QR code connected to 3D animated films, in addition to character songs. The physical collection of VeeFriends will go for $9.99 to $29.99, in plush and/or vinyl character sets. You can buy the VeeFriends products on Macy’s Toys”R”Us website, Macy’s mobile app, and at all physical stores of the chain nationwide.
The VeeFriends’ 3D animated content will reveal the backstory of each character. “Gary Vaynerchuck has created an extraordinary digital community,” said SVP of Merchandising at Macy’s, in the press release. “We are excited to partner with Gary and VeeFriends to bring his signature NFT characters to life exclusively at Macy’s reaching a new set of fans for us.”
“VeeFriends collectible plush and vinyl sets have unique stories and design, and we can’t wait for both parents and children to enjoy,” added Moore in the release. VeeFriends’ goal is to add value to the NFT community. “It’s just one more way we want to connect with our NFT holders and show them how we are developing the IP behind the characters,” said VeeFriends President Andy Krainak, in the release.
From October 4 to October 18 VeeFriends are giving token holders of specific characters a free, claimable figure. “VeeFriends wants to bring value to our NFT community — not only will they get first access to claim the collection, they also get priority to the in-store events,” said Krainak. This means NFT holders will have incentives in the form of higher priority service during events in physical stores.
Book Games stemmed from the announcement of GaryVee’s book, “Twelve and a Half: Leveraging the Emotional Ingredients Necessary for Business Success.” Even prior to the announcement Vaynerchuk had mapped out the utility of the book on an NFT scale. With Book Games, he was able to tie his book to the VeeFriends ecosystem, all while solidifying it as an integral part of the collection.
Book Games, is a layer 2 NFT project featuring 125,000 burnable tokens in a game that’s played, as GaryVee says, “forever.” The game worked by incentivizing Vaynerchuk’s NFT fan base to purchase as many copies of his new book as they possibly could to receive NFT rewards down the line.
First, a bit about “layer 2.”
In short, layer 2, refers to any blockchain solutions designed to help scale applications by routing transactions away from the Ethereum Mainnet (layer 1). These solutions still benefit from the Mainnet’s decentralized security model but work to increase transaction speed while at the same time reducing gas fees.
The two most popular Ethereum layer 2 solutions are Polygon — which has been integrated into OpenSea — and Immutable X. GaryVee elected to host Book Games on Immutable X to minimize gas fees (transaction fees). And considering the huge supply of Book Games tokens, this decision will likely serve to benefit the VeeFriends community greatly, especially if the games do end up running…forever.
But how do you play the game?
On Aug. 27th, 2021, the VeeFriends patriarch announced that for every 12 books someone ordered during the Book Games one-day promotion period, they would receive one NFT via airdrop. After a nearly 100 day waiting period, GV had sold over one million copies, announcing the gamified part of Book Games to go live on Jan. 10, 2022.
The “game” part of Book Games comes from the numerous trading possibilities enabled through Immutable X. Book Games holders can sell their NFTs or keep them to trade for other NFTs, sports cards, VeeCon tickets, and other special prizes. Book Games can also act as whitelist access for other VeeFirends projects, which we’ll cover later in the Series 2 section.
VeeFriends Mini Drops
Two months after Book Games, GaryVee announced the launch of VeeFriends Mini Drops — a limited sub-collection of VeeFriends that focuses on collaboration, scarcity, and what GaryVee calls the “cultural longevity” of the VeeFriends characters.
This Mini Drops began with the launch of Spooky Vees a collection of 31 unique 1/1 pieces featuring Halloween-themed VeeFriends characters that were dropped, of course, on Halloween. These NFTs were eligible to claim on a first-come, first-served basis by those who held a Halloween VeeFriend.
Also encompassed within the Mini Drops collection are Gift Goat NFTs. By holding the Gift Goat VeeFriends character, collectors can expect to receive 18 total exclusive gifting experiences curated by GaryVee and the VeeFriends team. Each gifting experience consists of one physical gift and one NFT out of a supply of 555, to match the 555 total supply of Gift Goat tokens.
To date, Gift Goat holders have received NFTs in collaboration with Danny Cole (Creature World), Isaac “Drift” Wright (Where My Vans Go), Pop Wonder, and more.
Now with these two robust secondary VeeFriends endeavors, Book Games and Mini Drops, each continuing to rack up sizeable amounts of ETH trading volume on the secondary market, GaryVee is poised to release the largest expansion of the VeeFriends and VaynerNFT ecosystem to date with VeeFriends Series 2.
Everything to know about VeeCon
By owning VeeFriends NFTs, collectors have immediate access to the VeeFriends community and have enjoyed access to VeeCon, Vaynerchuk’s multi-day “superconference” that happened from May 19 to May 22, 2022. The conference was accessible only to those who own a VeeCon NFT ticket and hosted a wide variety of speakers, including many of the most influential names in NFTs like Beeple, Steve Aoki, and even Snoop Dogg.
Yet, for the wide majority of general NFT enthusiasts, attending VeeCon has become unattainable, as the VeeFreinds floor in 2022 Q1 consistently remained around 16 ETH (~$52,000). But why would anyone spend that amount of crypto on a ticket to a “superconference” in Minneapolis, Minnesota? In short, because it’s directly tied to Gary Vaynerchuk.
Everything to know about VeeFriends Series 2
After months of teasing a new expansion to the VeeFriends universe, in early April 2022, Vaynerchuk revealed that the project ecosystem is set to grow by 55,555 additional NFTs.
With VeeFriends Series 2, each token will be priced at $995 USD in ETH and act as a way for the average NFT enthusiast to join the VeeFriends ecosystem at a lower cost. Things will go a bit differently this time around though, as the total supply of the new series will be released on numerous different dates throughout April.
First, on April 12, Book Games NFT holders that were randomly selected to be on the Friends List (whitelist) will be able to mint Series 2 NFTs. The total supply set aside for Book Games holders is 32,000 NFTs.
Also on April 12, those who hold a VeeFriends Series 1 NFT will be able to claim Series 2 NFTs. The total supply for this allotment is similar to the total Series 1 supply of 10,255.
Then, on April 25, the public sale will commence, with only 10,000 Series 2 NFTs available for purchase. This number may change as any unminted NFTs from the Friends List minting period will be placed up for sale on this date.
Finally, starting on April 27, 15 new characters (220 tokens per character) will be introduced into the VeeFriends ecosystem. One character will be made available per day over the course of 15 days, with the only way to receive one being to hold a specific set of Book Games tokens to enter a daily raffle.
It’s important to note that Series 2 NFTs will not give their owners VeeCon access, but will grant holders other incentives within the VaynerNFT ecosystem. The forthcoming drop will also present a variety of new token burn mechanics unique to Book Games and Series 2.
To learn more and prepare for the drop, visit the VeeFriends blog for the most up-to-date info on the forthcoming collection.
Where can you buy Gary Vee’s NFTs?
Looking for a VeeFriend NFT to call your own? Gary Vee suggests that, before buying, make sure you do your “due diligence, your research, your 50 hours of homework.” VeeFriends Series 1 can be purchased on OpenSea. If you’re looking to buy a Series 2 friend, you’ll need to wait until mid-April. Check out the above section for all the dates and details.
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