Sotheby’s Withdrew the Auction of 104 CryptoPunks Minutes Before the Event

Sotheby’s Withdrew the Auction of 104 CryptoPunks Minutes Before the Event

The renowned auction house – Sotheby’s – was about to host a much-anticipated auction of 104 CryptoPunk non-fungible tokens (NFTs) earlier this week. However, the auction house canceled the event minutes before launch.

‘Decided to HODL’

Several months ago, a pseudonymous collector with the initials 0x650d purchased the lot titled “Punk It!” for $7 million worth of crypto. A few weeks back, Sotheby’s announced it will auction the NFTs from the collection, with price estimations showing between $20 million and $30 million. Nonetheless, the collectibles owner withdrew from the event shortly before it began.

His decision led to significant disappointment from users waiting to participate in the auction. The Founder of the decentralized media platform RugRadio – Farokh – said:

“Bro, you stop acting like you rugged Sotheby’s, you made everyone look stupid. Even the press here is laughing at us because of you. Stop hiding the guilt behind dumb ass memes.”

Later on, the seller posted another tweet, hinting that the reason behind the cancellation might be Sotheby’s high commission fees.


Minted in 2017, CryptoPunks are among the first NFT collections. Currently, they are some of the most popular and expensive digital collectibles as some spent millions of dollars to acquire them. Earlier this month, CryptoPunk #5822 broke the records as Deepak Thapliyal – Chain’s CEO – purchased it for nearly 8,000 ETH. At the moment of the transaction, the amount equaled almost $24 million.

Sotheby’s Interaction With The Crypto World

The leading auction house for art and luxury has been part of the digital asset universe for a while now. In November last year, it joined forces with Future Perfect Ventures to invest $20 million in the NFT tech firm Mojito. Commenting on the matter was Sotheby’s CEO Charles Stewart:

“We believe in the future of using blockchain to expand ownership of digital assets. There is a huge amount of focus and interest in NFTs… Sotheby’s mission is to promote access and ownership of exceptional art and luxury objects, so focusing and developing this area makes a lot of sense.”

In January this year, the company announced it will host an auction for a rare 555.55-carat diamond that can be sold for digital assets. Earlier this month, the American entrepreneur Richard Heart purchased it for a whopping $4.3 million worth of crypto and renamed it after his firm – “ diamond.”

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