Armani Ferrante, CEO of Coral, the creator of Mad Lads, a Solana profile picture (PFP) project with NFTs, reflected on the project’s successful launch and the larger plans of Coral. The Mad Lads project generated over $15 million worth of trading volume since its launch, providing a bright spot for the Solana world after a series of rough months.
Ferrante described the departure of DeLabs’ DeGods to Ethereum and y00ts to Polygon as creating a void in the community. He explained that “there was this void where the heart and soul of the NFT space needed to have a new heartbeat, basically.” Ferrante credited the successful launch of Mad Lads to the reputation and community goodwill that he and fellow Coral co-founder Tristan Yver had built up in the space over the years.
Fock it. Mad Lad #2968 sold for 3420.69 SOL
💵 $74,742.08 USD
Ξ 39.95 ETH
— Mad Lads Sales Bot (@MadLads_Sales) April 26, 2023
Mad Lads also marked the first big drop tied to Backpack, an all-in-one wallet app from Coral that’s built around its Solana xNFT standard. The Mad Lads mint was the first big launch for Backpack, and Coral developed an in-app story experience that resembled “a collective boss battle” against the Mad King. Ferrante sees potential for NFT project creators to “get leverage with marketplaces” and trading potentially valuable screen “real estate” within their apps and pointing collectors to certain trading platforms.
Backpack is available in a public beta on mobile and web right now, and while xNFTs are currently permissioned due to ongoing security audits, Ferrante said that the long-term goal is to open it up to the community for anyone to build on. Ferrante promised a wave of planned announcements ahead around Backpack, including Mad Lads-related content and experiences.
In Ferrante’s view, Mad Lads’ successful launch and its dominance atop the market-wide sales charts over the past several days point to a rebirth for the Solana community. The project’s success is undoing the damage from the FTX associations and the narratives that formed as a result, along with the impact of DeGods and y00ts.
Ferrante’s long-term goal is for Backpack to become broadly multi-chain, with every protocol and every blockchain inside of a single user interface. He sees Mad Lads’ success as a sign that the NFT space is more exciting than ever and will continue to grow.