BAYC Creator Yuga Labs Announces Major Restructuring
The new direction will result in several role eliminations and renewed focus on its Otherside metaverse platform.
By: Camila Russo •NFT News
Yuga Labs, the team behind the Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) and CryptoPunks NFT collections, announced it's undergoing a restructuring process and focusing its efforts around core priorities.
The new direction will result in several role eliminations throughout the company, wrote Daniel Alegre, CEO of Yuga Labs, in letter posted on the company's website. The announcement didn't say how many team members are being laid off.
The move is another page on the final chapters of the 2021 NFT boom cycle, where BAYC reigned supreme as onlookers across the globe marveled at how "pictures of monkeys" were selling for millions of dollars. Yuga Labs raised $450M in a seed funding round led by a16z, which valued the company at $4B in March of 2022.
The BAYC NFT floor price is down 80% to 26 ETH from its all-time high of 128 ETH in April 2022, according to NFT Price Floor. The APE token is down more than 95% from its all-time high, according to Coingecko.
Alegre justified the move as an outcome of continuous internal reflection, looking into the company's capabilities and determining what should be done in-house and what should be outsourced to external partners.
"Are we taking on too much ourselves, and should we gain from the strength of third parties?" Alegre wrote. While there have been a number of successful initiatives, Alegre recognized "there have been a few rocky rollouts."
Projects such as Dookey Dash, Twelvefold, Made by Apes, brand activations with Gucci and BAPE, the Punks Legacy Project have all resonated well with consumers. However, the company realizes the need for more progress on the Otherside development. Otherside is Yuga Labs's metaverse platform.
The key focus areas of Yuga Labs moving forward include community engagement, commitment towards the development of Otherside and establishing partnerships.
On the communities front, Yuga Labs aims to continue supporting BAYC with the launch of a new gaming experience by 2024, as they realize the importance of maintaining the "early BAYC vibes."
Resources for the CryptoPunks team will be dedicated to solidifying the crypto-art legacy by improving and streamlining the Punks app, and other efforts. Meebits and 10KTF will be integrated into Otherside.
Otherside will be built out into 2024 through collaborations with third-party partners.
Alegre said the company plans to provide regular development updates as part of increased transparency.
Alegre said his top priority during this transition was fair treatment and gratitude towards exiting employees. The transition package includes severance, COBRA coverage, and assistance in job-seeking.
Despite the necessary changes, the CEO remains optimistic about the future, expressing his strong belief that Yuga Labs will forever revolutionize consumer-brand interactions.