The Metaplex Foundation, which oversees Solana’s Metaplex NFT protocol, recently launched an airdrop of its MPLX token for Solana NFT creators—and on Monday, it extended the offer to eligible collectors that had previously interacted with certain NFT projects. However, the expanded token offering quickly tanked its price.
The MPLX token’s price is currently down 65% over the past 24 hours, after initially tanking by more than 68%, to a price of about $0.11, per data from CoinGecko. The price of MPLX has dropped from a peak of $0.34 during the same span. MPLX is also down 67% over the past week, and 87% from its all-time high of nearly $0.90 on September 20 in the hours after the token first launched. The token hit a new all-time low price this morning.
MPLX is a governance token that’s designed to give the community the ability to vote on future developments around the Solana NFT protocol. It debuted late on September 19 and was initially available only to creators who had developed Metaplex-based Solana NFT projects.
💪 Collectors are the lifeblood of the Metaplex ecosystem! The Foundation has approved a collector airdrop of 40 million $MPLX to Solana NFT creators. Visit our claim site to see if you’re eligible. https://t.co/FbJz5bmobQ
— Metaplex Foundation (@MetaplexFndn) October 11, 2022
There was one significant caveat at launch, however, and it remains in place now: the airdrop is not available to any United States-based users, likely due to regulatory concerns.
Also, at launch, the airdrop excluded the creators of projects that had “rugged” users—meaning the creators had disappeared after launch or failed to live up to promises—with help from digital asset compliance firm, TRM Labs.
Now Solana NFT collectors that have interacted with an eligible NFT mint can also claim a share of 40 million MPLX tokens dedicated to such users. It’s not immediately clear which projects qualify, but anyone outside of the United States can connect a Solana wallet to the MPLX airdrop website to check on eligibility and potentially claim tokens.
MPLX has a maximum supply of 1 billion tokens, although it’s unknown how many tokens are currently in circulation—both CoinGecko and CoinMarketCap do not provide a figure for the current circulating supply. As a result, neither site offers a current market cap figure. Decrypt asked a Metaplex representative for the figure but did not immediately hear back.
Solana is the second-largest NFT ecosystem in terms of trading volume, trailing the leader Ethereum. In September, momentum around recent popular projects like y00ts and ABC resulted in overall Solana NFT trading volume nearly doubling over the August tally—up to $133 million worth—with top marketplace Magic Eden claiming the majority of that trading action.
When the MPLX token launched last month, The Metaplex Foundation said that 20 million Solana NFTs had been minted to date using its tech, resulting in over $3.5 billion worth of combined primary and secondary sales. More than 2.4 million creators and collectors had interacted with Solana NFTs at that point, the foundation claimed.
The Metaplex Foundation raised $46 million in January in a round co-led by Multicoin Capital and Jump Crypto, with prominent participants also including NBA stars Michael Jordan and Allen Iverson, as well as Solana Ventures, Animoca Brands, and Alameda Research.