SHIB Briefly Passes ADA as Meme Coin Mania Takes Over Crypto Market

Meme coins have once again seen a rise in popularity and SHIB has been a major player, even briefly surpassing Cardano in terms of market cap.

The crypto market has seen a surge in meme coins over the past few weeks. Shiba Inu (SHIB) was even able to briefly surpass Cardano (ADA) in market capitalization. Newer meme coins like Pepe (PEPE), Dogwifhat (WIF), and Turbo (TURBO), have also seen some very impressive gains. Turbo, in particular, saw its price surge by around 2,000% in just the past three months of trading. However, the Based Doge (BOGE) protocol suffered an exploit right after the Normies attack, and scam celebrity meme coin ventures have been wreaking havoc in the crypto community.

Shiba Inu Dethrones Cardano

Over the past few weeks, the crypto market saw a big rise in the popularity of meme coins. Shiba Inu (SHIB) emerged as a major player and its recent surge in market capitalization allowed it to briefly surpass Cardano (ADA), placing it among the top 10 cryptos by market cap.

Currently, Shiba Inu has a market cap of around $16.2 billion, slightly behind Cardano's $16.5 billion. When Shib surpassed ADA, its market cap stood at $16.4 billion, while Cardano’s market cap was $16.3 billion.

Meme coins like Pepe (PEPE), Dogwifhat (WIF), and others have also seen some impressive gains, with many surpassing more established cryptocurrencies. Pepe even momentarily overtook Polygon (MATIC) for the 18th spot before a price correction dropped it to 20th. Similarly, WIF also recently claimed the 28th position by jumping past Hedera (HBAR) with a market cap of just under $4 billion.

The broader market, including major players like Bitcoin (BTC) and Ripple (XRP), has shown more of a mixed performance. Despite the overall sideways movement of most altcoins, meme coins have thrived, achieving double-digit gains over the past week and dominating the list of top gainers.

Top crypto gainers (Source: CoinMarketCap)

The current meme coin bull run is driven by the newer generation of coins like Pepe, WIF, and Book of Meme (BOME), all of which were created in the past year and have shown remarkable growth. The older meme coins, Dogecoin (DOGE) and SHIB, do still perform well, but they have not matched the meteoric rise of these newer entrants.

AI-Created Meme Coin Makes a Splash

Turbo (TURBO), a meme coin created using OpenAI's ChatGPT is yet another crypto that is turning some heads at the moment. The meme has reached a valuation of $638 million just one year after its launch.

On May 28, TURBO saw its price surge to a new all-time high of $0.009302, which boosted its market capitalization to around $638 million. Over the last three months alone, Turbo's valuation skyrocketed from $27 million to over $600 million. This is a massive 2,262% increase in market cap.

TURBO price over the past 1 year (Source: CoinMarketCap)

Currently, TURBO is trading hands at $0.007559 after its price took a 19+% tumble over the past day. However, it is still up an astounding 11,626% from its all-time low that was reached in September of 2023.

Digital artist Rhett Mankind, who created Turbo, believes the meme coin’s success is due to its decentralized nature. Mankind noted on the project's official website that the token's popularity surged because of his minimal involvement in its management, as the community has taken charge and implemented ideas much more effectively than he could.

Mankind created Turbo in April of 2023, using creative prompts to guide ChatGPT in developing what he envisioned as "the next great" meme coin. At first, the project was a joke, but Mankind eventually committed to following through with it, giving the AI chatbot instructions to help Turbo achieve a top 300 ranking on CoinGecko.

Based Doge Suffers Exploit

Unfortunately, things are not going well for all meme coins. The meme coin protocol Based Doge (BOGE) on the Base network was exploited on May 27. The project’s team confirmed that the attack was similar to the recent Normie exploit.

Based Doge is inspired by the Doge meme that developed a Web3 video game called “FlappyBoge”. The team also plans to release a nonfungible token (NFT) collection.

After the attack, the team announced that they will take a snapshot of current token balances and relaunch the project to compensate all of the victims impacted by the exploit.

Blockchain data revealed that an account ending in bAOC conducted more than 120 transactions on Base, transferring about 91.4 million BOGE into the account. The attacker used an unverified function on a smart contract, making the code for this function non-human-readable. The attacker then swapped the 91.4 million BOGE for 4.47 Ether (ETH), which was worth around $16,926 at the time.

Despite the relatively small gain for the attacker, the impact on BOGE's price was major. Before the attack, BOGE was priced at $0.002983, with a total supply of 1 billion, giving it a market cap of approximately $2.9 million. During the attack, the price plummeted to $0.000072, resulting in a loss of over $2.8 million in value for the 1 billion coins.

An analysis by Web3 insurance provider Neptune Mutual linked the Normie attack to a faulty “get_premarket_user” function. This function allowed users to mint new tokens if they were premarket users or had the same balance as the deployer wallet. The attacker manipulated their balance to match the deployer wallet, gaining minting authority and minting more than 170,000 Normie tokens, which they then dumped on the market, causing over $800,000 in losses.

Celebrity Meme Coin Scheme

Some celebrities have also gone through some meme coin struggles over the past few days. A new celebrity meme coin that was created by alleged serial scammer Sahil Arora has raised more than $300,000 in a token presale named after Australian musician Iggy Azalea.

Azalea very quickly distanced herself from the project, and shared on her X account that she originally planned a legitimate coin with utility but was unaware of Arora's presale.

Azalea joins a growing list of celebrities that are associated with Arora's controversial meme coin ventures. American rapper Rich the Kid accused Arora of hacking his X account to promote the "RICH" token, while Olympic medalist Caitlyn Jenner claimed Arora scammed her during her token launch.

Arora's involvement in celebrity meme coin projects has drawn a lot of public attention this week. He has been accused of multiple scams, including Avalanche-based rug pulls that earned him small amounts in stolen fees. A recent Telegram channel post detailed accusations of a rug pull during a token launch, where liquidity was removed within five minutes. An investor in that project also stated that Arora only made 6-8 AVAX from the RICH token.

Arora denies that his Avalanche campaigns are scams and pointed out that some investors made some decent profits while others lost due to poor timing.

Some of his past ventures include founding various businesses, like payments project ZelaaPayAE and influencer platform Habibi. However, a former contractor for ZelaaPayAE accused Arora of failing to pay 800 British pounds owed, while in 2017, Vijay Shekhar Sharma, founder of Indian payments giant PayTM, publicly accused Arora of identity theft.