The Solana NFT ecosystem boosted in April over the launch of Mad Lads, an attention-grabbing profile picture (PFP) NFT collection that has been topping market charts. Tensor’s secondary marketplace surpassed the recently dominant Magic Eden platform as a result of the trading frenzy.

Quick Takes: 

  • The Solana NFT ecosystem recently saw a surge driven by the launch of Mad Lads, with Tensor’s marketplace surpassing Magic Eden in market share.
  • Tensor’s Blur-like reward system and exclusive Mad Lads promotions attracted NFT traders. Magic Eden’s SOL incentives and fee reductions were not enough to retain its leading position.
  • Tensions between Tensor and Magic Eden have been escalating on Crypto Twitter, fueled by content theft accusations and image manipulation.

Tensor’s Mad Lads Initiative 

Tensor, which launched in June last year, recently encountered a surge in activity after introducing trading rewards similar to one of the largest Ethereum marketplaces, Blur. Differently, securing the majority of its market share in Solana, thanks to the recently launched Mad Lads project.

Echoing Blur, the startup — which raised $3 million in March thanks to the VC firm Placeholders — similarly dubs itself a platform for “pro” traders, stating it has a “fast and rich interface”. The marketplace also looks and feels like Blur, due to having a similar rewards system — launching token rewards to loyal traders.

Moreover, Tensor promises to use all funds from Mad Lads’ transactions in the first 90 days to buy the cheapest NFTs from the project and issue them to traders via a random draw. According to Tensor, the 57 NFTs given to top traders will amount to around 4,280 SOL (equivalent to $93,650).

Traders flocked to the platform to take advantage of the specific promotions around Mad Lads instead of buying the digital assets on Magic Eden, pushing Tensor’s Solana NFT sales.

As a result, Tensor now holds 45% of Solana’s NFT market share. On the other hand, Magic Eden is trailing just behind at 44%, according to weekly data by Tiexo.

Magic Eden also provided an incentive for Mad Lads NFTs. However, it eliminated marketplace fees and pledged to distribute 2,00 SOL (around $43,700) among Mad Lads’ traders during the first 30 days after the debut. Following the hype of Tensor, the marketplace later revealed it would be issuing more than 5,000 SOL (approximately $109,400) of Mad Lads trading fees back to users. More was needed to keep its top Solana trading spot.

Tensor vs. Magic Eden – Twitter Wars

In the ever-evolving world of Web3, controversies are never too far away. After noticing Tensor being the new top dog, Magic Eden claimed to discover its competitor using its content delivery network (CDN) to steal NFT images. In response, Magic Eden replaced Tensor’s images with its logo and mascot and made a “humorous” tweet about doing so.

Magic Eden shortly deleted the tweet following backlash. Nevertheless, it was too late — community members latched on to the drama:

Tension has escalated on Crypto Twitter since, with both NFT trading hubs receiving criticism. Regardless of these challenges, the Solana NFT ecosystem continues to thrive over both platforms competing to capture traders’ loyalty and attention.

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