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Dapper Labs shares NBA Top Shot details, future plans

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Yesterday at Consensus 2021, Dapper Labs CEO Roham Gharegozlou said that the NBA Top Shot non-fungible token (NFT) app had passed a million registered users. However, not all are yet paying users, with half having purchased something so far.

Revenues are approaching $700 million, with the bulk of that figure in player-to-player transactions as opposed to directly buying from the app in ‘drops’. While a small number of NFTs trade for more than $100,000, Gharegozlou was keen to emphasize that two-thirds of the 4.5 million transactions to date are for less than $50, with some as little as a dollar.

Gharegozlou said the daily credit card spend is still low, implying that most are using cryptocurrencies to make purchases.

On a daily basis, 150 – 250,000 fans use the app, and unsurprisingly the userbase is quite U.S. centric.

NBA Top Shot runs on the Flow blockchain developed by Dapper Labs after it suffered poor performance using Ethereum with CryptoKitties back in 2017. Flow now has 2,000 developers building on the platform.

Dappers CEO couldn’t have been more pleased with having NBA as its first partner. The NBA was described as “Super forward thinking, willing to think outside the box and do something creative,” said Gharegozlou. “And they let us go big, they didn’t say just do one drop,” and see how it goes.

He continued, “The vetting of who’s going to be a good partner and lean in with us was the most important factor for us in terms of working with an IP (intellectual property). The fact that it ended up being a top five global (sports) brand and the perfect intersection of sports and culture and music and fashion (meant it was) the catalyst for all those communities to hear it as opposed to just the sports world.” And he went on to praise the engagement of the athletes as well.

Having recently raised more than $300 million at a $2.6 billion valuation, clearly Dapper is talking to many other rights holders. He was keen to emphasize that the infrastructure is still at 1999, rough-around-the-edges internet levels for those targeting mainstream rather than cryptocurrency users. He also noted that not all brands would use the technology in the right way.

“At end of day, your brand reputation is the most valuable thing you have,” said Gharegozlou. “Just like social, some people will misuse the platform and hurt their reputation versus (others who will) use it well, be authentic and help their reputation.”

At a big picture level, Dapper Labs has no small ambition. It aims to get a crypto wallet in everybody’s pocket. 

“The number one mission is getting adoption of this technology, not by yelling crypto or whatever, but by building products people want to use,” said the Dapper Labs CEO.

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