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Sorry this is old news, but Beeple's artwork was apparently bought by Metakovan for 42,329.453 ETH, which was around $69M at the time, in March 2021. This was obviously a very big transaction, but if this transaction was done using Ethereum (source: https://www.aljazeera.com/economy/2021/3/12/mysterious-crypto-investor-metakovan-paid-ether-in-beeple-auction), this transaction should be in the blockchain and locate-able in Etherscan. But from what I can see, there is no trace of such a transaction in the blockchain from Metakovan.

The smart contract does say that the owner of the token (tokenID - 40913) is Metakovan, but the 42000 ETH transaction isn't visible on Metakovan's transaction history. And the weird part is, neither Metakovan nor Beeple's accounts have had anywhere near this amount in their wallet at any point of time, according to their analytics on Etherscan. Then where did all that money go?

I must be missing something. I couldn't really find this information on a Google search either. If someone could point out my mistake, that would be amazing. I am pretty new to NFTs and Ethereum.

Thanks in advance :)

Relevant Links:

The auction page, along with smart contract address and Beeple's wallet address - https://onlineonly.christies.com/s/beeple-first-5000-days/beeple-b-1981-1/112924

Metakovan's wallet ID - 0x8bB37fb0F0462bB3FC8995cf17721f8e4a399629

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  • Later on, also got to know that the buyer and collector are linked with each other. Not so decentralized ! Jul 24, 2022 at 13:35

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There is a blog post here which points out that the money was likely transferred through private means due to the transaction not being visible on-chain.

The auction was concluded with a payment of $69 million worth of Ether cryptocurrency. However, nobody has been able to find this payment on the Ethereum blockchain, the money was probably transferred through some private means.

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Here is Amy Castor blog post about the topic and points out the transaction may have happened within Coinbase Custody wallet. The post also discussed about the sketchy history of Metakovan and whether the transaction happened really or not.

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