Hello and welcome to this week's Overbit News.

The year 2021 has been a tremendous growth year for cryptos in general, but none has grown faster than Shiba Inu, a meme coin.

The dog-themed cryptocurrency had risen from obscurity to become one of the year's most valuable cryptocurrencies by market capitalisation.

The currency has also made leaps on the list of most-viewed currencies on CoinMarketCap, in addition to having one of the fastest growth rates in the sector.

Based on data from CoinMarketCap, Shiba Inu was the most popular coin of the year. Bitcoin came in second as the most popular coin on the market analytics site. Dogecoin, a rival meme coin, came in third on the list, indicating that meme currencies had utterly dominated the market in 2021.

Dogecoin had benefited from the likes of Elon Musk promoting the digital asset, whereas Shiba Inu had profited from the void left when Dogecoin had become astronomically enormous.

In 2021, meme coins reigned supreme. When asked about meme coins a little over a year ago, no one would have known what they were. They are some of the hottest assets by sector in a blossoming industry.

We close out today's edition of Overbit News to look at a recent NFT market development, albeit this one is a bit different from some other recent announcements.

According to a Bloomberg interview with CEO Jesse Powell, cryptocurrency exchange Kraken is building a marketplace where consumers can use their non-fungible tokens as collateral for loans.

"If you deposit a CryptoPunk on Kraken, we want to be able to reflect the value of that in your account. And if you want to borrow funds against that," Powell told Bloomberg.

Powell referred to the CryptoPunk collection of 10,000 pixel-art pictures, which is regarded as a ground-breaking effort for NFTs, or blockchain-based digital representations of art, music, and other commodities.

According to Powell, Kraken's marketplace would provide custodial services and might appeal to consumers who want to do more with their NFTs than just collect them. In an interview with Insider earlier this month, he stated that Kraken planned to launch an NFT marketplace as soon as February.

Kraken now has 8.5 million clients, which is roughly double the number it had a year ago.

According to Bloomberg, Kraken's larger competitors Binance and FTX Exchange have launched NFT markets, while crypto exchange Coinbase has a million-strong waiting list for its NFT marketplace. OpenSea is one of the largest NFT markets globally, although it does not provide custodial services.

Rather than throwing their hat into the crowded NFT marketplace arena, Kraken seems to be taking a side-step approach, looking to capture some of the NFT customers while also providing them with a unique value proposition.

The cryptocurrency market expanded to a value of more than $3 trillion in 2021, thanks in part to the NFT segment of the market increasing in importance as digital art became more popular.

According to Cointelegraph Research, NFT sales might reach a new high of $17.7 billion in 2021. A 225-year-old auction house, Christie's sold an NFT artwork for a record-breaking $69 million in March.

This concludes this week's edition of Overbit News!

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