1. Startup

Non-Fungible Token (NFT) 101: Accelerating Adoption in Indonesia

There are currently four local NFT marketplace services available

The global non-fungible token (NFT) fever which occurred since early this year has opened up opportunities for local players to offer easy ownership of (digital) art objects that have been absent for collectors. This year alone, there are at least four NFT marketplace platforms available in Indonesia. Those areTokoMall, Kolektibel, ChickenKingNFT (owned by KFC), and Paras Digital, offering its own unique value.

According to Wette.de data, the global NFT has $43.08 billion market cap and a trading volume of around $3.6 billion. Meanwhile, according to DappRadar, NFT sales volume jumped to $10.7 billion in Q3 2021, rises over eight times from the previous quarter.

The world's largest NFT marketplace, OpenSea, recorded sales volumes of up to $3.4 billion in August 2021. The activities remained strong through September when global stock markets faltered. Rising cryptocurrency prices during the COVID-19 pandemic is often said to drive the growth of the NFT market — as people use cryptocurrencies to buy NFTs — but analysts say crypto assets have value, regardless of market conditions.

As of October, Beeple still ranks first on the list of top NFT artists with a $145.03 million total artwork value. According to Cryptoart.io, he has sold 1346 artworks so far with an average sale of $107,752. The second-ranked artist, Pak, following at a farther distance with a total value of $56.41 million.

NFT 101

From various literatures, NFT is most easily understood as a unique digital asset. The asset exists in various industries, from digital art, virtual real estate, to collectibles, games, and more. Basically, any type of media can be printed or tokenized and converted into NFT: art, trading cards, memes, gifs, video clips, audio clips, tweets, this article — you name it. Once tokenized, these assets can be bought, sold and traded using cryptocurrencies.

Why is the world flocking to NFT? The US' serial entrepreneur, Gary Vaynerchuck (or “GaryVee”) said, there are three added values ​​NFT offers, utility, access, and social currency. If you understand the concepts behind membership cards, credit card rewards, tickets to special events for VIP members, then you understand NFT.

“If you’ve ever purchased skins or other virtual items for your video games, you understand NFTs. The reason you wanted that item was to be a utility in a world that you cared about, or to have the clout and bragging rights amongst your friends and others. NFTs are going to extend that same utility and “flex” of social currency to everything else,” Vaynerchuck explained.

He continued, the reasons people buy NFT are the same reasons people wear designer-made products, drive luxury cars, or hang pictures of important figures on the wall. It's the same reason people care about blue ticks on Instagram.

“Years down the line, I believe that we will all be checking out each other’s digital wallets and bonding over the mutual interests in our NFT purchases. Everyone will have some kind of NFT project, the same way everyone has a social media account.”

On one hand, NFT will help ordinary people realize their true destiny as artists. This method is similar to social media platforms that transforms people to influencers. NFT will open the door for so many people with artistic inclinations to explore avenues they never thought possible.

There's another point, NFT is revolutionizing IP ownership. The fact that artists will continue to earn royalties from reselling their digital work will empower content creators in a never-seen-before way. Each popular NFT marketplace has its own rules and preferences for regulating and paying royalties.

On Rarible, an artist can tokenize and manage its own NFT sales. For example, while making a listing on Rarible, one can set the royalty percentage to earn on each (re)sale on the secondary market.

In the first stage, after minting a digital art product for the first time, the artist gets all the sales share after deducting the platform commission.

On the subsequent sales, the artist will earn a 20% commission on each sale, even if they are no longer directly involved in the sale. Unfortunately, when the goods are transferred to another NFT platform, such as OpenSea, the royalty scheme is no longer valid and cannot be transferred.

Ideosource's Co-founder and Managing Partner, Edward Chamdani explained, royalties are the most important thing for every creator. He took an example in the music industry. Previously, the medium used for listening to music was through vinyls, cassettes, and CDs. Over time, platforms like iTunes and Spotify arrived and helped the supply chain to the end consumer.

However, its existence shuts down the previously established supply chain as musicians can no longer print cassettes to CDs. In the end, music labels were affected and eventually went out of business. In fact, the musicians' biggest income comes from selling physical goods as the source of royalties.

“Musicians were not really preserved since the beginning, from royalties through CD sales, to the presence of digital platforms which means they no longer produce CDs. The royalties obtained from the digital platform are considered to be in long term, compared to the CD sales with bigger up front revenue,” Edward said.

Royalty is considered to be the reason for many artists intrigued to enter the NFT scheme. Apart from Rarible and OpenSea, there are many marketplace options offer unique propositions. These include Axie Marketplace, CryptoPunks, NBA Top Shot Marketplace, SuperRare, KnownOrigin, Foundation, Nifty Gateway, Solanart, and Hic Et Nunc.

The last platform, based on DailySocial's observation, is a favorite destination for local artists to sell their work. One of the musicians, Souljah, has used NFT to market the artwork for the song entitled “Keep On Moving”. Souljah released a limited number of NFTs and stop releasing on September 30, 2021 through its own website and selling digital merchandise through Hic Et Nunc.

NFT in local wisdom

The NFT hype encourages people to try this platform as an alternative investment commodity, supported by the presence of secondary markets on various popular marketplace platforms. Nonetheless, NFT is still a very new market, therefore, being prudent is mandatory.

Despite the risks, many global marketplace platforms are not very friendly for Indonesians with limited insights to the NFT scheme. In order to make purchases on NFT platform, collectors need a wallet that is compatible with the NFT-enabled blockchain network in their preferred marketplace.

If you plan to buy and sell NFT via an Ethereum-based blockchain platform, a compatible wallet is required. For example, OpenSea is compatible with Metamask, Bitski, Fortmatic, WalletConnect and other wallets. It's similar to put money in a wallet, you need to fill the wallet with a certain amount of crypto assets before buying, registering, or printing NFTs. In addition, it is necessary to find out what crypto assets are used by the marketplace you want to use.

Finally, create an account on the marketplace. In most marketplaces, the process of registering, creating NFT, selling, and buying on the platform incurs a blockchain network fee with an amount depends on which blockchain-based system is used.

The majority of NFT marketplaces only accept payments with Etherium coins. There are others that accept fiat currency and more standard payment methods, such as PayPal, but this is quite rare. Due to such conditions, NFT transactions considered to be expensive in ETH. As of November 10, 2021, 1 ETH costs IDR 67.6 million ($4,808).

Kolektibel is a new NFT marketplace player that further explored this market, it was designed as friendly as possible, therefore, NFT could be quickly adopted. Kolelktible adopted NBA Top Shot to Indonesia by utilizing fiat currency through payment gateways for their NFT transactions.

Kolektibel's CEO, Pungkas Riandika explained that every NFT transaction is carried out with fiat currency and the payment is integrated with popular digital payment instruments, such as GoPay, OVO, Virtual Account, debit/credit cards, therefore, you can make payment via Alfamart and Indomaret.

Kolektibel is different from other NFT marketplaces as it stands on the Vexanium public blockchain network for recording NFT ownership. Vexanium is said to be the only Indonesian based public blockchain with a legal entity in the form of a foundation (Vexanium Technology Nusantara Foundation) created by Danny Baskara.

Vexanium does not charge any fees. Unlike other public blockchain networks that charge gas fees per NFT transaction. This strategy is possible because Vexanium uses the DPOS (delegated proof of stake) mechanism. This is a variant that provides operational benefits with very efficient energy and environmentally friendly.

“Furthermore, as Vexanium has the ability to approach block producers (decision maker) in the Vexanium DAO entity. Such decision as cost determination (resources fees) associated with NFT. These things cannot be found in other public blockchains," he told DailySocial.

Pungkas said, this is expected to be a breakthrough for Indonesians as they can directly collect NFT in an easy way. “If you pay attention to transaction using crypto in DeFi, it requires a long process, one of which is to own a wallet, including a gas fee, and so on. It makes NFT adoption difficult.”

Kolektibel's approach differs from its peers in terms of payment methods. TokoMall only provides TKO crypto assets for NFT exchange, Paras Digital uses NEAR, and ChickenKingNFT uses ETH. All three are utilizing the integration with MetaMask wallet to transact.

TokoMallKolektibelParas DigitalChickenKing NFT
Blockchain networkBinance Smart Chain (BSC)VexaniumNEAR ProtocolEthereum (OpenSea)
Coin/ Payment methodsTKOFiat/IDR, through payment gatewayNEARETH
WalletMetaMask, WalletConnectNoneMetaMaskanyting compatible with OpenSea
NFT asset focusDigital arts by artists and creative communityIP brand owners of such categories, sports, creative, legendary moments and cultureDigital collectible, including games, comics, toys and artsCharacterized KFC chicken mascot

Market differentiation

Each NFT marketplace has its own target market to popularize NFT in Indonesia. TokoMall, for example, targets local creators, consisting of artists, digital artists, and creative communities with good reputations to enter NFT. To date, there are 40 partners who have joined, including Nevertoolavish, MaximallFootwear, DAMN! I Love Indonesia, Banyan Core, Si Juki, ONIC E-Sports, Afternoon, Mr. Kinur, Karya Karsa, Jakarta Metaverse, and Museum of Toys.

This way, each creator with a fan base can easily attract the mass market to know more about NFT. TokoMall allows collectors to exchange their collected NFT for physical merchandise from merchant partners at TokoMall through the company's newly released TokoSurprise feature.

“The difference with other platforms is that we are trying to push digital meets reality, so these collectors have the opportunity to exchange NFTs for real goods. Therefore, it's not just a digital collection,” Tokocrypto's VP Marketing, Adytia Raflein told DailySocial.


Raflein also mentioned that TokoMall is expected to encourage artists and brands to be creative in the NFT world with a local platform at much friendlier costs, rather than having to use a global platform.

With TokoSuprise mechanism, creators who release a limited number of NFT works are marketed through TokoMall. Every collector who buys the work has the right to exchange it for physical merchandise to TokoMall. In the future, TokoMall will collaborate with more creators from various business verticals, such as consumer companies to the e-sports industry, thererfore, NFT can become more mainstream in Indonesia.

Since two and a half months since TokoMall was launched, it already has more than 8,500 collectors, with over 5 thousand NFT works produced by 40 official partners. In terms of sales, over 250 NFTs have reported being sold with a transaction value of Rp200 billion.

Meanwhile, in its early days, Kolektibel entered the basketball segment through its inaugural partnership with the Indonesian Basketball League (IBL). For IBL, this innovation is a way to bring basketball and IBL fans closer together with their athletes. IBL prepares video documentation of matches, carefully curated based on golden moments in the match.

The shortlist of moments is visually repackaged and registered into the smart contract blockchain, which makes each asset record its ownership history. This strategy opens new revenue channels for athletes and clubs through the NFT sales.

After IBL, Kolektibel will target other IP owners with assets in various categories, such as sports, creative, legendary moments, and culture. Through its derivatives, there will be more NFT assets to collect. “Sport is quite dynamics and closer to the community. Therefore, this category is our step to further understand how the future development of NFT will be," Pungkas said.

Paras Digital, on the other hand, has ambitions to be a pioneer in the digital transformation of collectibles, including games, comics, toys, and digital arts through smart contract capabilities and blockchain technology. Therefore, the platform targets pop-culture enthusiast, such as fandoms and gamers focusing on China and Southeast Asia.

Eventually, ChickenKingNFT leverages the existing KFC's solid brand to attract new collectors. Through its website, ChickenKing offers 4,848 uniquely generated limited edition NFTs. The story of the Chicken King, refers to 6 chickens from 6 different backgrounds and characteristics, competing with each other to prove which one stands as the best chicken in the universe.

KFC offers every member the opportunity to receive discounts on physical merchandise and partner stores, attend exclusive community gatherings, and others. Currently, ChickenKingNFT can be purchased through OpenSea.

First step to go mainstream

The presence of these local marketplace platforms paved the way for more NFT use cases. Globally, many IP owners from various industry verticals have entered NFT, such as gaming, fashion, music, logistics, real estate, identification and documentation, and many other things. It seems that is just a matter of time until all of this happens in Indonesia.

"This technology [NFT] soon to be mainstream when it's due," Edward added.

Vaynerchuck believes that NFT is a representative of major cultural change. History teaches humanity that through change, comes skepticism and mass confusion. Many who scoff at the NFT's idea or viability are simply do not understand the larger implications. Like the concept of online dating in the '90s or have a trip with strangers (Uber and Lyft), every idea is "crazy" to the point where it's deemed not.

NFT will continue to be seen as "fad" by those who haven't changed their mindset to embrace where the world is going.

Original article is in Indonesian, translated by Kristin Siagian

Are you sure to continue this transaction?
processing your transaction....
Transaction Failed
Try Again

Sign up for our

Subscribe Newsletter
Are you sure to continue this transaction?
processing your transaction....
Transaction Failed
Try Again