Ethereum is down this week despite recently setting its highest price in over two years, but the market lull didn’t stop someone from spending big on Wednesday: A CryptoPunks NFT was just purchased for more than $16 million worth of ETH.

Punk #7804, one of just nine Alien Punks in the influential Ethereum NFT collection, traded hands for 4,850 ETH on Wednesday afternoon, or $16.42 million at the time of the sale. That makes it the second-largest CryptoPunks sale ever whether measured in ETH and USD.

The sale comes just weeks after another Alien Punk (#3100) sold for 4,500 ETH, which was worth $16.03 million worth at the time of the transaction on March 3. As with that purchase, the buyer of this latest Punk has yet to be publicly identified. The Ethereum wallet used for the purchase was funded for the first time Wednesday via Coinbase.

However, the seller of Punk #7804—who purchased it in 2021 for 4,200 ETH, or $7.57 million at the time—posted a message on Twitter, lamenting that they did not “elevate” the profile of that particular Punk during their time holding it.


“End of an era. I've long since felt like an imposter. Holding Punks, and potentially NFTs [as] a whole hostage by not elevating 7804 in the way he deserves,” the pseudonymous Peruggia wrote. “After over a year of looking around, I feel I've found the right buyer with the right vision to appropriately elevate this asset.”

The top CryptoPunks sale of all time happened in February 2022, when a crypto startup CEO purchased another Alien Punk (#5822) for 8,000 ETH, or $23.7 million.

Today’s purchase now ranks as the fifth most expensive NFT sale of all time. The record is still held by Mike “Beeple” Winkleman, whose digital artwork collage “Everydays: The First 5000 Days” grabbed international headlines when it was auctioned for $69.3 million by Christie’s in March 2021, helping to ignite the initial fever around NFTs.


Minted in 2017 by Larva Labs, CryptoPunks helped set the standard for tokenized profile pictures—one that would later be expanded upon by the Bored Ape Yacht Club and countless other collections that followed. The NFTs were originally given away for free, yet have generated nearly $2.8 billion worth of secondary trading volume to date, per data from CryptoSlam.

Even the cheapest available CryptoPunks NFT on a marketplace is listed at about 51 ETH, or $177,000 worth. The CryptoPunks IP was ultimately acquired by Bored Ape Yacht Club creator Yuga Labs in 2022.

Edited by Ryan Ozawa.

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