NFT Project ‘Evolved Apes’ Developer Disappears with USD 2.9M

Source: OpenSea

Investors in a non-fungible token (NFT) project known as Evolved Apes have been left in the dark, after the anonymous developer behind the project disappeared with ETH 798 (USD 2.9m) in project funds.

The developer, who goes by the pseudonym ‘Evil Ape,’ had in the past said that the NFT collection is part of a coming fighting game featuring the apes. However, the game has not yet materialized, and the developer has now vanished, according to a report from Vice.

Also disappearing along with Evil Ape and the USD 2.9m in sales proceeds was the project’s official Twitter account and website, neither of which could not be accessed at the time of writing. 

Ethereum (ETH) blockchain data shows that the Evolved Apes wallet currently has a balance of 0, after four separate transactions on September 24 siphoned the funds into two new wallet addresses. 

The Evolved Apes NFT collection is described on NFT marketplace OpenSea as “a collection of 10,000 unique NFTs trapped inside a lawless land.” Listings were still available on OpenSea at the time of writing, with asking prices starting from ETH 0.005 (USD 18) for the lowest-priced pieces. 

Meanwhile, and on a positive note, crypto researcher Messari this week reported that the NFT market as a whole has now surpassed USD 10bn in secondary sales.

The figure was shared by Messari research analyst Mason Nystrom, where he also said that the NFT market over the past 12 months has “evolved from a small ecosystem with a few hundred million in sales volume to a multichain ecosystem worth tens of billions of dollars.”

According to Messari’s data, NFT sales peaked around August 21, which coincided with the craze surrounding NFT collections such as Loot, Axies, and various profile picture NFTs. However, daily sales still remain over USD 50m, the firm said.


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