Contributor, Benzinga
January 9, 2023

ApeCoin is a cryptocurrency used for governance and utility for members of the Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) community. Most notable is ApeCoin’s role in control over the ApeCoin DAO. While the price per token and market capitalization have taken a hit, the ApeCoin DAO has remained active and is implementing improvements voted on by the community members to continue its expansion in Web3.

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Overview of ApeCoin

Today, there are 361,250,000 ApeCoin tokens in circulation. This ERC-20 token was airdropped to wallets holding BAYC NFTs, including those that held Mutant Ape Yacht Club (MAYC) NFTs. The token can also be purchased on the open market through a crypto exchange. The price per token is trading at just under $4, with a market capitalization that is chopping around $1.3 billion. 

It can be tricky to distinguish what each part of the BAYC ecosystem does. As it holds today, the ApeCoin DAO is a completely separate decentralized entity, so Yuga Labs doesn’t have complete control over it. The ApeCoin DAO is governed by the token holders; a “special council” is responsible for implementing these proposals and making them a reality. While a lot of energy was behind the DAO during the bull run, noticeably less activity has occurred recently. The founder of Reddit, Alexis Ohanian, sat on the special council with other notable tech executives. The DAO will vote on new council members in January.

Why Do People Use ApeCoin?

People use ApeCoin for many reasons. The first and most obvious reason is to speculate on its price. The BAYC NFT collection was the most successful NFT project made. Its ascent in price gave traders a small fortune, partially out of sheer luck. Anything that is somewhat tied to apes has received a lot of speculative trading. ApeCoin can also be staked to earn interest on the ApeCoin platform, so owners have a further financial incentive to hold the token.

A social incentive also exists. A lot of BAYC NFT holders are also holders of ApeCoin, sharing community and vision among the NFT collectors and DAO operators. The ApeCoin DAO could potentially benefit the holders of the token, as it could act as a decentralized venture capitalist (as many in the ApeCoin DAO are hoping) and operate in any number of ways that the community deems fit.

ApeCoin History

The founders of ApeCoin are officially referred to as “The Ape Foundation.” While the site holds a secretive tone, YugaLabs does have some involvement. One of the main founders of BAYC, Greg Solano, just spoke at Benzinga’s Future of Crypto event about some of his ideas and inspiration. He explained his belief in the rights to digital property.

The Foundation appointed the original council and is responsible for administering the decisions of the ApeCoin DAO. At the time of the airdrop, 62% of the tokens were sent to Bored Ape and Mutant Ape NFT holders, 16% to Yuga Labs and charities, 14% to launch contributors and 8% to the founders of BAYC. Not all of the ApeCoin funds were deployed – just slightly over a third of the one billion ApeCoins in circulation. Typically, this action is a bearish price indicator.

Where to Buy ApeCoin

ApeCoin can be purchased on centralized and decentralized exchanges (DEXs). ApeCoin is supported by a wide range of exchanges including eToro, WeBull and Uphold. If you are looking to purchase the token on a decentralized exchange, then Uniswap is a popular DEX to check out.

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Ethereum Blockchain vs. Other Blockchains

ApeCoin is operated on the Ethereum blockchain – one of the most reliable blockchains that exist – and is an ERC-20 token, which is the most common token standard on Ethereum. Other ERC-20 tokens include Uniswap (UNI), Chainlink (LINK) and Aave (AAVE).

The Ethereum blockchain has a couple of key advantages over other Layer 1 blockchains. Perhaps the most important is its security. Many thousands of people around the world validate transactions on Ethereum, ensuring that the network is nearly invulnerable to direct cyberattacks. 

It's also rich in diverse innovative projects. Projects on the Ethereum blockchain can easily communicate with other projects, using the functionality of other protocols to benefit your own. This relationship attracts more protocols and developers to work on the Ethereum chain, in turn making the ecosystem richer with utility. Ethereum also has a simple programming language in Solidity (at least compared to some other chains like Solana which uses a mix of Rust, C and C++), a decentralized structure and reliable security. 

How to Store ApeCoin Safely

While there are centralized exchanges that offer ApeCoin, many crypto investors don’t want to trust a centralized intermediary to hold their digital assets. Many assets are leaving centralized exchanges in favor of non-custodial wallets. With the use of a non-custodial wallet, users are responsible for their own crypto. They are given a private set of keys that ensures ownership of the assets. 

If you elect to hold your assets in your own custody, it is important to use a cold storage wallet. Cold wallets are kept away from the internet and store cryptocurrencies in a hardware wallet. The Ledger Nano S Plus is one of the most popular cold storage options for crypto investors. Ledgers are all you need to keep your cryptos safe and support more than 1,000 different cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Dogecoin, Ripple and all ERC-20 tokens.

The Success of ApeCoin Relies on ApeCoin DAO

The time for launching useless cryptocurrencies and NFTs has passed. In today’s market, something like ApeCoin needs to show real value to remain relevant. The development of ApeCoin DAO, along with the new staking platform, has set ApeCoin apart from the rest of the rabble. The odds are stacked against ApeCoin, especially if the bear market is prolonged. While its survival is trivial, those on the inside of the DAO have the ability to guide it through this crypto winter.

Disclosure: ²Sum of median estimated savings and rewards earned, per user in 2021 across multiple Coinbase programs (excluding sweepstakes). This amount includes fee waivers from Coinbase One (excluding the subscription cost), rewards from Coinbase Card, and staking rewards. ³Crypto rewards is an optional Coinbase offer. Upon purchase of USDC, you will be automatically opted in to rewards. If you’d like to opt out or learn more about rewards, you can click here. The rewards rate is subject to change and can vary by region. Customers will be able to see the latest applicable rates directly within their accounts
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