Price Instability Engulfs NFT Trading Platform iBox in Controversy

Heated discussion arose Tuesday night on Chinese microblogging platform Weibo regarding the drastic dropping of prices for digital collectibles on iBox. iBox provides financialization services for NFT trading and opens up trading to the college student community, which has already caused significant controversy within the industry.

Domestic media outlet reported that on the evening of May 17, an official WeChat account called “TT Digital Collection” said that “the platform is set to close following the misappropriation of startup funds by the owner for his investment in iBOX, which shrunk by 90%.” The news quickly circulated online. On the same day, all digital collections on iBox plummeted, with most down by 50%. Then, on the evening of May 18, all NFT prices on iBox rose sharply across the board, basically up by more than 30%. Regarding the matter, a senior NFT practitioner told that this might be a common trick by the platform to carry out a rug-pull on its users.

iBox is an NFT trading platform. Different from other platforms, iBox financializes NFTs and provides matching trading. This new trading is popular among young people born after 2000. As lanjinger reported, many iBox collections were traded at sky-high prices in the secondary market, and the turnover of many collections is as high as tens of thousands of yuan.

On May 13, iBox announced plans to suspend the purchase function of users born after January 1, 2003 and aged over 60 years old. The purchased collections can be consigned and cashed out. iBox will adjust and optimize its user structure in the future.

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iBox was founded by Hainan iBox Technology Co., Ltd., which was established in May 2021. The ultimate beneficiary of the company is Xuan Songtao and the legal representative is Li Wei. Its business scope includes auction business, basic telecommunications business, blockchain related software and services, and more.

Previously, the National Internet Finance Association of China, China Banking Association and Securities Association of China jointly issued an initiative on April 13 this year to prevent NFT-related financial risks. Specifically, they clearly required resolutely curbing the tendency of NFT financialization and securitization, declining to provide centralized trading (centralized bidding, electronic matching, anonymous trading, market makers, etc.), continuous listing trading, standardized contract trading and other services for NFT transactions, and covertly setting up trading locales in violation of regulations.