The Shiba Inu meme coin saw a sharp price increase following a Twitter exchange between the creator of Dogecoin and SpaceX and Tesla boss Elon Musk. The increase momentarily catapulted the coin above rival meme coin Dogecoin in market capitalization. Although it has subsequently dropped below its meme coin rival, it has retained a spot in the top 10 cryptocurrencies by market cap.
The rise of Shibu Inu
The Shibu Inu meme coin was created in August 2020 and dubbed by its anonymous creator as the “dogecoin killer.” The coin features the breed of dog featured in Dogecoin imagery, which was itself a joke based on an internet meme.
Since its creation, the price of Shibu Inu has increased by over 4 million percent. However, following a peak in May, the coin has remained relatively stable around the $0.0000006 mark. That was until the beginning of October.
On October 3, the meme coin saw a significant increase rising to $0.000028 on October 7, where it remained for much of the month.
Musk the meme coin kingmaker
Elon Musk is no stranger to inducing markets to rise and fall with simple tweets. In the past, he has played a significant role in spikes in both Bitcoin and Dogecoin. However, in both instances, the jump was a result of Musk’s endorsement. This latest example of his powers, however, seems to have come about after he dismissed a completely different coin.
On October 27, Shibetoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonym used by Dogecoin creator Billy Markus, tweeted “there are no promises in crypto, except from scammers.” Although not explicitly stated, many believed it to be in reference to Shibu Inu, which had jumped to $0.000048 during the preceding 5 days thanks to another Musk tweet.
Markus, like many in the industry, believes that Shibu Inu is a classic pump and dump fraud scheme. Put simply, these schemes involve the creation of a coin with a viral quality. The creator ensures to acquire massive numbers of the coin while it is still worth next to nothing. They then promote it heavily and when it hits its peak, they cash out their entire share crashing the price and leaving millions of investors with worthless assets.
In response to the tweet from the Shibetoshi Nakamoto handle, Elon Musk, with his 61.6 million followers, jokingly asked if he sent two Dogecoin, would Markus send one back. Within hours, the price of Shibu Inu has skyrocketed to $0.000088.
The tide raises all ships
Ironically, the massive hype around Shibu Inu’s rise on the back of Dogecoin caused the latter’s price to also jump. The meme coin rose from $0.25 to $0.30 in less than a day and continues to hold around the $0.28 mark.