A conversation with Aavegotchi’s Jesse Johnson

Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs), once the red-headed stepchild to more popular smart contract implementations, are finally beginning to have their day in the sun.

Average purchase prices of NFTs on peer-to-peer exchanges are rising sky-high. Six-figure sales are no longer uncommon. Dapper Labs, the minds behind the great-granddaddy of NFT collectible projects, CryptoKitties, have attracted significant investment for their native blockchain Flow — including investment from NBA stars.

All this progress leads some to wonder, however: where are NFTs going next?

One person who might be able to glean some insight is Aavegotchi co-founder Jesse Johnson. Johnson was working with asset-backed products in the NFT space long before they became widely popular. One of his early efforts, Bullionix, was among the first platforms to offer NFTs backed by real-world commodities — specifically, gold.

With Aavegotchi, Johnson is moving beyond meatspace assets and taking asset-backed NFTs into a whole new realm: decentralized finance (DeFi).

According to the Aavegotchi litepaper, Aavegotchi are digital collectibles backed by Aave interest-bearing aTokens. Using a blend of NFT token standards including ERC-721 and ERC-998, Aavegotchi feature a combination of traits that determine their value, including random traits determined at their minting, the value of aTokens staked, and NFT-backed “wearables” — ‘child’ NFTs that can be programmatically tied to each Aavegotchi.

In an interview with Cointelegraph, Johnson revealed that the Aavegotchi team is now up to 9 full-time employees, and that they also count a small army of volunteer artists and enthusiastic community members as part of their ranks. Moving forward, Johnson aims to bring Aavegotchi deeper into the DeFi fold, mixing NFTs and this explosive, emerging financial vertical in exciting new ways.

After speaking with him, one thing became clear: this is just the beginning for both NFTs and Aavegotchi.

NFTs Move Beyond…

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