In my "A Retrospective On CryptoKitties" article, I wrote about how Kitty #23 was flipped for more than 210 ether (about $94,500 at the time) over 4 days. Turns out, the guy who did one of those tremendously profitable trades read my article and reached out to me with an even wilder story. In 3 days, he made 462 ether trading CryptoKitties. 462 ether was worth $210,000 at the time and $323,400 today. We did an informal interview over email. Here is his CryptoKitties story.
In our email conversation, this user went by the moniker Dapper Kittie. Dapper Kittie has been involved with Bitcoin since 2012. CoinMarketCap's Bitcoin chart doesn't even go back that far. He made his first purchase of Bitcoin through Coinbase in early 2013 for about $20 each. He was an early enough customer of Coinbase that when he reached out to customer support, the founder, Brian Armstrong replied. Coinbase had yet to hire their first employee, Olaf Carlson-Wee.
With his early entrance into the cryptocurrency scene and a knack for trading, Dapper Kittie was quite well off even before his success with CryptoKitties. He currently works from home as a cryptocurrency trader.
Dapper Kittie discovered CryptoKitties when he saw a post on social media about the 246 ether sale of Genesis Founder Cat #1. This peaked his interest with the dApp but he was still hesitant to pull the trigger; he thought it was just a wash sale to generate hype. Nevertheless, he kept a close eye on the CryptoKitties market since he believed there could be some value in these virtual cats.
Primary Market: Buying the newly released Founder Cats
Sure enough, he noticed that the rare "Founder Cats" were slowly being bought up. Founder cats were incredibly rare cats created by the CryptoKitties team to fund the development of the dApp. The team created 100 of these rare cats. They were initially valued as such: 250 ether for founder cat #1, 50 ether for founder cats #2-10, and 10 ether for founder cats #11-100. These values slowly decreased over time until settling at a price floor.
Dapper Kittie started noticing that several of these founder cats were being bought and resold for huge profits. For example, founder cat #88 was bought for 10 ether and resold for 78 ether! 8 is a lucky number in China. This resale got Dapper Kittie to commit and he decided to buy founder cat #42 (because of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy) for 10 ether and founder cat #7 (lucky 7?) for 50 ether.
Upon commiting 60 ether, he was content with his two founder cats when he noticed two accounts that swooped in to buy up all the remaining low number founder cats. This caused him to purchase founder cats #45 and #47 before every other founder cat was bought up. All in all, he invested 80 ether into the founder cats.
One of the accounts that was buying founder cats en masse went by the name "US Treasury". Dapper Kittie first noticed that US Treasury relisted several 10 ether founder cats at 30 ether and they were quickly sold! Dapper Kittie did the same with two of his 10 ether founder cats and both of them were quickly sold. A nice tripling in investment, not bad.
Meanwhile, the founder cats were getting more and more expensive. Cat #2 was resold for 150 ether but this was cheap at the time given that many single digit founder cats started selling for 300+ ether. Dapper Kittie decided to up his own prices and sold cat #42 at 75 ether (65 ether profit) and cat #7 at a whopping 190 ether (140 ether profit).
Secondary Market: Buying relisted Founder Cats
Having sold all of his original founder cats at a tremendous profit, Dapper Kittie decided to dabble in the secondary founder cat market. He started buying cheap founder cats being relisted by other traders.
At this point, he had made enough from selling his original founder cats that he was just playing with profits. One of the cats that he bought during this time was founder cat #23. He bought it at 70 ether and resold it 24 hours later for 133.9 ether.
After flipping a few more secondary market cats, Dapper Kittie was ready to call it quits when a big opportunity jumped in front of him. Someone who evidently wasn't paying close attention to the market decided to sell two founder cats for only 50 ether each, a far cry from the average market price of ~150 ether.
Not surprisingly, he jumped at the opportunity and amped up the gas he was willing to pay for his transactions to buy the two cats (the fee was peanuts compared to the amount of ether he was sending). The Ethereum network was quite congested at this point from the CryptoKitties mania and Dapper Kittie could only hope that no one was able to front run him.
Luckily, he was able to nab both of the cheap founder cats for 50 ether each and resell them for 125 ether and 126 ether a couple hours later. These two cats were both sold to the US treasury account mentioned earlier but has since not been bought by anyone else. The two cats are still being listed for 100 ether each right now.
Getting out before the bubble pops
At this point, with most of his cats sold, Dapper Kittie was ready to call it quits. His last cat was sold for 95 ether (25 ether profit). A few days later, the CryptoKitties bubble popped and prices for the cats nosedived.
Dapper Kittie was apt enough to identify the mania and left early with tremendous profits. In the end, he made 462 ether over the span of 3 days trading CryptoKitties. This was worth about $210,000 at the time. Definitely not bad for 3 days of trading.
|CAT||BOUGHT (eth)||SOLD (eth)||PROFIT (-fees)||BOUGHT||SOLD|
|7||49.21||190.05||133.71||12/3 21:28||12/4 19:45|
|42||9.86||75.08||62.41||12/3 9:21||12/4 8:19|
|23||69.14||133.88||59.71||12/4 8:38||12/5 7:07|
|45||9.84||35.06||23.90||12/3 19:39||12/4 7:24|
|47||9.84||30.17||19.19||12/3 19:47||12/4 6:27|
|27||70.46||95.33||21.29||12/4 8:46||12/7 13:27|
|52||50.15||125.73||70.87||12/6 5:15||12/6 6:01|
|93||50.32||126.03||70.98||12/6 5:30||12/6 7:26|
Asked what he planned to do with all this extra capital, he said that he wants to give back to charity by donating to animal rescue and welfare groups.
This is his CryptoKitties address: https://etherscan.io/txs?a=0xa3e6fea802c91140b832127aea816ce78b0be0de&p=1
What. A. Legend.
I'd like to thank Dapper Kittie for reaching out to me and doing the informal interview with me. His story is fascinating and definitely something to be remembered in cryptocurrency history.