The frog-themed memecoin, known as PEPE, made headlines again on Tuesday after its price surged by 31% after the team burned $5.5 million worth of its tokens (approx. 6.9 trillion tokens).
For those unfamiliar with the term, a ‘token burn’ refers to the intentional removal of tokens from circulation, and is often utilized as a mechanism to reduce a token’s overall available supply, which has the potential to drive up the token’s value. This is achieved by transferring those tokens to an inaccessible wallet address, ensuring they can’t be used or sold by anybody again, including the sender.
According to the PEPE team, this move was done intentionally after $15 million worth of its tokens (approx. 16 trillion tokens) were suddenly transferred to various crypto exchanges in August, including Binance, OKX, and Bybit.
Three days later, a developer from the PEPE team revealed in an X thread (formerly Twitter) that the series of unexpected, illicit transactions, which not only alarmed investors, understandably, but caused the token’s price to drop significantly, was the result of “bad actors” whose “big egos and greed” kept the PEPE team trapped with “inner strife” since its inception – not a complete shocker when it comes to these types of memecoins.
The Aug. 25 X post revealed that since PEPE’s inception, it has been “plagued by inner strife,” with part of its team operating in bad faith, prioritizing ego and greed over the wellbeing of the PEPE community, “$PEPE is now entirely free of this baggage, with clear roads ahead,” the X post read in part. “There has often been conflict, and the majority of the team involved in $PEPE creation started to distance themselves after the first week of project inception.”
“$PEPE is now entirely free of this baggage, with clear roads ahead. There has often been conflict, and the majority of the team involved in $PEPE creation started to distance themselves after the first week of project inception.”@pepcoineth Twitter post
The post continued to state that these bad actors “blocked team progress” when it came to making donations or purchases with multi-sig wallets due to the members’ “inability to make signatures, disagreements, and being unavailable to contact for weeks at a time.”
While most of the stolen $PEPE tokens from the multi-sig wallets were quickly sold on Binance and OKX, the announcement stated that the remaining 10 trillion tokens would be transferred out of the old multi-sig wallet and into a new wallet where they would “safely rest until a use or burn arises,” bringing us back to Tuesday’s news on PEPE burning 6.9 trillion tokens.
With this recent burn, the Pepe team’s holdings now amount to 3.79 trillion tokens, valued at approximately $3.72 million, according to CoinMarketCap. Given that the 24-hour trading volume on the open market has skyrocketed to approximately $397 million USD, this burn does seem to have a minimal impact on both investors and the market.
As apologetic as the PEPE developer appeared in the August X post, he also admitted that it was time to bring on a “new time of advisors” to help change the project’s direction. The project has since moved its official communications away from the former Twitter platform and onto Discord.
Grayscale Prevails Over the SEC, But Now What?
With PEPE’s hopeful resurgence as a legitimate success story for a “memecoin,” Bitcoin has also maintained its 17-month peak of $35,000 USD that now seems to have more credence given yesterday’s massive legal victory by Grayscale Bitcoin Trust against the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Back in August, a federal appeals court overturned the SEC’s rejection of Grayscale’s application to convert its trust into a spot Bitcoin ETF, due to the U.S. regulator’s failure to explain why it has previously approved similar products.
Now, the SEC is required to take another close look at Grayscale’s previously rejected Bitcoin ETF application and make a decision that isn’t “arbitrary and capricious,” as the court eloquently stated. “The Grayscale team looks forward to continuing to work constructively with the SEC to convert GBTC to an ETF,” Grayscale spokeswoman Jennifer Rosenthal told Bloomberg. “GBTC is operationally ready, and we intend to move as expeditiously as possible on behalf of our investors.”
As of Tuesday afternoon, Grayscale’s shares surged, trading by nearly 5 percent, while Coinbase shares also rose approximately 7 percent, according to CNBC.
Editor’s note: This article was written by an nft now staff member in collaboration with OpenAI’s GPT-4.