Asahi Iwanaga, Representative Director of Avex Technologies, Inc., highlighted the success of the Muv-Luv Alternative anime’s NFT project in a business seminar at AnimeJapan on Monday. 11,115 Keyframe Card packs were sold, averaging 38,448 yen (approximately US$315) per sale.
The Muv-Luve Alternative franchise partnered with the Sakura Gate tech company last October to launch a Keyframe Card service featuring key animation frames from the anime. Although the Keyframe Cards will not have NFT functionality at launch, they will be added later as a means to incentivize owners to buy and trade cards on the NFT marketplace. Note that owning the Keyframe Card of a scene is not equivalent to owning the copyright, which is retained by the original IP holders.
As an extra incentive for the fans, those who bought a certain number of cards had their names listed in the credits of the Muv-Luv Alternative Blu-ray Box and the accompanying booklet. The sets shipped in January and March.
Iwanaga described the cards as an effective product to target a small audience of “core” fans, who are interested in NFTs but lack the means to engage with them. He said that in the anime world, NFTs can be used to further monetize an IP by selling them as a limited-edition collector’s item.
Nevertheless, he recognized the challenges of implementing NFTs, pointing to the proliferation of unauthorized NFTs on OpenSea. He also clarified the distinction between digital ownership and copyright, and recommended that companies get in contact with a specialist in IP law before investing in NFTs. In particular, care must be taken so that the original rights holders can continue to profit even after customers sell their NFTs to other people. He said that this can be done be selling NFTs directly to the consumer first, rather than putting them on an open marketplace.
Avex Technologies launched a blockchain service in 2019 to prove ownership of digital property. In April 2021, the company launched a beta version of Assetbank, an IP distribution service focused on NFTs.
On the AnimeJapan show floor last weekend, animation studio Gonzo promoted its “SAMURAI cryptos” blockchain/NFT project at its booth. Gonzo president Shinichiro Ichikawa said that the project will create “a new era of animation for the NFT era with Japanese samurai,” and will focus on the keywords “Cypher,” “Decentral,” and “Solidarity.” The project will feature designs by Makoto Kobayashi (Last Exile, Mobile Suit Gundam ZZ), Michinori Chiba (Basilisk, Sk8 the Infinity), and Hiroya Iijima (Afro Samurai, Mazinger Z: Infinity).
Source: AnimeJapan Business Seminar