AIP-219: ApeDAO Partners with Kickback!

Proposal Name: ApeDAO Partners with Kickback!

Proposal Category: Public Goods Funding, IRL Events

ApeDAO joins Kickback in sponsoring a AAA-produced one year promotional timeline in gaming — the second iteration of the successful IRL gaming activation from Cxmmunity — the Kickback. Apecoin will stand beside Kickback foundational sponsors in presenting educational tech panels, a Valorant esports tournament and concert from A-list artist (our last headliner was Pusha T).

Foundational sponsors have already committed over $1M to the production of the event.

What is the Kickback? Video — The Kickback: What is the Kickback? on Vimeo
Deck — Copy of CXM Presents - The Kickback - Google Slides

Author Description:
15 years total experience in the gaming business AAA events throwing tech events with Cxmmunity sponsored by Amazon, Riot Games, Epic Games, Activision, Twitch, Microsoft, Verizon, Discover, NBC Universal, Honda, Hot Pockets, Space Jam, Red Bull, Mountain Dew and others. Web3 native since 2014 with a record of successfully running/investing in international P2E gaming guilds including Yield Guild Games, Merit Circle DAO and PathDAO.

Held meet & greet for ApeDAO at Miami Art Basel. Particpates heavily in ApeDAO governance, cultivating ideas that are currently being considered in the framework of ecosystem working groups, including Degen Prop House and DAO partnership building w/ LexDAO, Aragon, et al.

Team Description:
Team video — The Kickback: Meet the Team on Vimeo

Team founders and bios:
Ryan Johnson, Cxmmunity — One of the first generation of Atlantians to dedicate his career to esports career building. Aside from creating the HBCU esports market by bringing foundational sponsors Verizon and Discover to underserved rural colleges, Ryan also serves as Head of Culture for Ghost Gaming, one of the largest gaming guilds in the world, which expands Cxmmunity’s direct social media reach to over 1 million.

Warren Davis, MAcc, Cxmmunity — Proven record of creating and executing on strategies that build efficiencies and generate new/sustainable revenue streams. Strong understanding of GAAP and cutting edge web3 financing. Emphasis on Working Capital with a focus on building strong Balance Sheets through DRO and DPO optimization. Former SunTrust Bank executive.

Team of 10 FT employees and assistance from key partners for AAA production, security, insurance.

Key Advisors:

Trip Hawkins — Former EA CEO
Kevin Hoang — Former Twitch Comms Head, current Acadarena CEO
Sharon Byers — SVP Sports and Entertainment Marketing, Coca-Cola
Dapper Labs
Solidea Capital
Teamawa Gaming

tl;dr — Cxmmunity has direct social media reach of 1 million, annual unique views of 20 million, and the ability to partner ApeDAO with educational and governmental institutions that will forward the ApeDAO mission.

The ApeDAO logo will be seen beside industry leading sponsors in a AAA production event.


Partnering with Cxmmunity exposes $APE and ApeDAO to the next generation of gamers entering web3. The format we’ve set up creates an ongoing relationship between ApeDAO and Cxmmunity that extends far past the initial Q1 event. $APE and ApeDAO promotion extends into Q4 with 3 other sponsored AAA events and is consistent with virtual events on social media and at 40+ partner US schools.

Partnering with Cxmmunity places ApeDAO in closer relations with accredited institutions and municipal governments that sponsor, oversee and regulate these events. Representatives from ApeDAO gain closer proximity to educational and government leaders to lobby for integration into these institutions, and they would be able to see firsthand how ApeDAO integrates into mainstream society.

Just as importantly, these events are the perfect balance between entertainment and education. Any ApeDAO member who comes will have a blast. and there will be endless opportunities for viral content with ApeDAO branding beside A-list celebrities with AAA production quality from Cxmmunity.

ApeDAO also partners with a company that has a track record of bringing A-list resources to underserved communities with a focus on women.

Key Terms:
Cxmmunity — Gaming events company with a focus on improving participation of underserved communities in gaming.

Kickback — IRL activation from Cxmmunity.

Cxmmunity will be performing all technical backend with production assistance from a AAA media production company.

Steps to Implement:
Cxmmunity has all of the manpower necessary. All Apes need to do is show up ready to party and connect!


Q2 - IRL Live Broadcast in Cannes, France: June 15, 2023
Q3 - 4 Week Virtual Gamer Training: Sept-Oct, 2023
Q4 - IRL Live Broadcast in Atlanta/Washington D.C or Austin: Nov. 2023

Overall Cost:
$APE equivalent of $100,000 USD (100% of profits are kept as $APE to serve as a perpetual funding source for future events that will feature ApeDAO. FOREVER.)

Respect the gamer - The Kickback: Respect the Gamer, Keats on Vimeo
Higher learning - The Kickback: Higher Learning on Vimeo

1 Like

Love this collaboration, love the onboarding via IRL Events, love the eSports vertical and most definitely love the DEI mission!


  • $100,000 seems like a pretty small ask, but what is it for specifically? Is it basically a sponsorship?
  • If so, does the grant cover sponsorship for all 4 events?
  • How many ApeCoin DAO speakers allowed on the panels and will there be a seat available in all events?

Count me in as a supporter and happy to help if/when there’s an activation at E3 LA.

SSP :vulcan_salute:t4:


I like the idea and what you guys are doing. But what exactly are we trying to advertise here? And to whom? $APE and ApeDAO do not have a “proper” use case for people outside the ecosystem.
I believe this is not the right time to spend the funds on advertising. Maybe later this year, but not for early events like NCAA Final Four.

1 Like

Thanks for the support @ssp1111 — there’s huge potential here when Apes realize the… potential… here :laughing: on to the questions…

Yes, basically. Honestly, because there’s already $1.1 million put in this thing from foundational sponsors, the ask is the smallest I could justify and not have our Coke and Spotify contacts mad at us. But, I made the ask small for many reasons.

  1. ApeDAO is in a transitional stage
  2. Apes in general are risk averse to most things at this point
  3. I wanted to make this a no-brainer, so even the whales who only read titles would say yes :rofl:

Actually, MORE than 4 events. In Mantis, you’ve got someone who knows how to stretch a web3 dollar. Not only will ApeDAO get presence at all 4 events, but also promotion from Cxmmunity on socials through Twitch Web3 gaming sessions, collabs with huge partners like Ghost Gaming and offline IRL activations we do like Cxnnections mixers.

All of the “fund through yield” ideas that seem to be so difficult for the DAO to implement… we’re already doing that. Making the partnership official gives us the ability to publicize those successful efforts and expand them.

3-4 speakers at the Q1 event, because that was the size of our other panels from Riot Games, etc. The panel seats are guaranteed for Q1 only because our other sponsors contribute per event. For the $100,000 ask, ApeDAO could have booths at the other IRL events and full access at all events.

Thanks. Assuming this passes, there will be numerous opportunities to combine these efforts into something much bigger than either of us could do on our own.


@Kuddo, these are all important questions, and I hope these answers show that we’ve come up with solutions that others simply haven’t thought of or had the political will to execute. We’ve done a great deal of R&D that has worked incredibly well for us, and we’d love to share this knowledge with ApeDAO and web3 in general. To the questions:

To whom = 1 million college students with the motivation to build and game!!

Our other sponsors — Coca-Cola, Spotify, AT&T, Wendy’s, CashApp — partner with Cxmmunity to create relationships with the next generation of dedicated, motivated builders. ApeDAO is not trying to sell a product to an end user. It is trying, just like AT&T (gaming & AT&T? huh?) to find the best and brightest value creators (college students) who will create 1000X value for their companies with a small investment now.

The DAO is trying to do the same thing. We offer a direct connection to the greatest talent pool in the world, because we are connected to the university system in a way no other gaming company in the world is.

The DAO’s issue is it’s begging for participation from randoms — not vetting them for interest, motivation, nothing. There’s also no outreach to institutions like universities. Think about it. Do you think the best proposals come from money grabbers who want to slap Ape logos on NASCAR then never post again after failure…

or does ApeDAO expansion come from partnership with fully aligned institutions with the resources and motivation to create big thoughts, execute on them, and even provide student credit and a path to employment for the efforts of those involved?

An example of what’s possible, specifically with Cxmmunity:

One of our Board members, Prof. John Cash of Johnson C. Smith University, created the first accredited esports curriculum in North America. This opened doors for students normally overlooked in gaming to create viable careers in one of the number one growth industries in the world. It also caught the attention of Charlotte news and municipal government officials and the US Department of Education.

For those in the cheap seats: Partner an industry that needs validation (DAOs, gaming) with unis and motivated gatekeepers like Prof. Cash (on our Board), grease the wheels with money from Spotify and Coca-Cola, and all of a sudden you’re working with media and the federal government instead of fighting them. This is just one of the use case pathways Cxmmunity specifically can help create for $APE — a viable utility to create employment and new industry.

Here’s more proof: The Kickback: Higher Learning on Vimeo — Another one of our founders, Julien Fitzgerald, helped to create an esports program at Morris Brown College with the last Kickback.

Cxmmunity is literally creating the esports industry, and we can do the same for ApeDAO in mainstream gaming with this partnership.

This is absolutely wrong. What’s correct is the mainline BAYC and ApeDAO zeitgeist are very confused on how to move next with $APE, especially for people “outside the ecosystem.” Cxmmunity doesn’t have this problem.

Just like we created viable lanes for esports lovers who were, before us, outside the esports system, we are doing the same for $APE — we just haven’t made it public. Why? Because we’re doing this with a lot of cryptos. We hope $APE will be the first to see the opportunity and validate our efforts so we can publicize and expand them. Cxmmunity Discord is a hub of web2-web3 bridging, and we’re using $APE, as one of many cryptos, to do it. We have been able to double our Discord in the past month by playing Dooky Dash and participating in web3 tournaments like XBorg’s XTreme Championship Series. Cxmmunity’s cracked the code of web2-web3 bridging because we keep a perspective that’s wider than the average Ethereum gaming maxi, so we have processes going that simply haven’t occurred to the wider ApeDAO community to implement. But they are being used, and they are working incredibly well for Cxmmunity.

An official partnership allows us to expand these efforts.

If you think of this as advertising, God bless you. It’s not, but I’m not here to change your opinion on that! For everyone else, though, I encourage you to read my response above to see exactly why we have triple AAA companies who are not even really aligned with gaming sponsoring us — we know how to turn that partnership into value.

I know I’ve said a lot. Believe me; there’s more. :rofl: Hopefully I’ve explained things from some angles you may not have considered. Because honestly, this partnership brings opportunities that are otherwise not possible for ApeDAO at this point.

Happy to answer other questions; otherwise, I hope everyone reading this will vote yes!


Thanks @Mantis for doing this proposal on our behalf.

If any community member has any questions, we’ll be happy to answer them. Otherwise, we look forward to the process and a fruitful partnership that bridges web2 and web3 for everyone’s benefit!


Welcome @cxmmunity – we’ve heard so much about you, glad to finally meet.

Congrats on the proposal, with Mantis’ stewardship you should sleep well at night:


Again, glad to have you here.

SSP :vulcan_salute:t4:


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Hello everyone,

@Mantis has completed editing their AIP Idea to be their AIP Draft.

Will keep the community updated accordingly.



Hi ApeCoin DAO Community,

We have sent a list of follow up questions to the author

Follow this Topic as further updates will be posted here in the comments.

Kind Regards,


Gm, super interesting idea!

Could you explain to me like I am a small child what the long term benefits are to the next generation of gamers being exposed to ApeCoin DAO and how those benefits come back to ApeCoin DAO.

Is the message that as a grant giving DAO, ApeCoin DAO are the place for gamers to come to, to build the future of gaming?

As I understand it this proposal will raise the awareness of ApeCoin DAO to a targeted audience of gamers, accredited institutions and municipal governments (USA and the French government at Cannes? Any details on these educational and government leaders are likely to be?)

Profits will be held in $Ape to be spent on future IRL and virtual events. I assume that there would be a similar level of exposure at these future events? Does the relationship hold if and wen those profits run out? How long a relationship does the DAO get for its initial funding assuming the situation that 100k isn’t enough to provide perpetual funding.

ApeDAO members have awesome times at these events - how is this controlled, is 1 ape enough for a ticket to vip treatment?

It sounds like Cxmmunity become a brand building asset for ApeCoin DAO through this proposal.
How does Cxmmunity work with ApeCoin DAO to update that brand as it changes over time? I guess with the comms working group?

A very interesting idea and keen to understand more about it.


Sure man, thanks for the interest.

I think the benefit that is unique to partnering ApeDAO with Cxmmunity is Cxmmunity’s partnership with 50+ colleges. These are not just gamers — these are the smartest, most motivated gamers on the planet. If ApeDAO becomes a presence while they are students, then they will join ApeDAO not just as gamers, but as game devs, gaming project founders, gaming economists and gaming marketers.

Another huge advantage that is unique to us: Many of our events are in educational settings like this one. When we do events like this, we don’t have to find the quick, easy way to explain web3 to students. They are coming to learn! So we can take our time, explain the ins and outs of every step — downloading their Metamask, getting them their keys and putting $APE in their wallets, step by step!

Of course we also have our hype events, but those educational events where we can slow down and really teach what ApeDAO and $APE are… these are the events that will onboard your true next gen web3 builders.

I can go with that, yes!

Yes, you can scroll through Cxmmunity social media and see a sampling of the events we’ve put on and what schools they’ve been at. A few examples:

North Carolina Central University Madden & 2K tournament
Morgan State U. building a pro esports computer lab
Johnson C. Smith U. rewarding a top COD player and community activist with a Discover Scholarship

Sampling of orgs:
Been recognized by the US Dept of Education
Partnership with the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA)

There are many more. We have done IRL/virtual events like this with 40+ colleges with more on the schedule this year. We focus on colleges that don’t otherwise get attention. These are the students who need the most attention and are the most hungry to participate. Aggregated, they represent the largest contingent of student gamers in the world.

This is where personal knowledge of web3 defi comes in. How can $100K in $APE not provide perpetual funding if the value is kept in $APE and invested in one of the many staking program variations (likely BendDAO)? The only way funding runs out is if Yuga fails, and as we all know, Never Fade Yuga!

If staking ends after 2 years, the $APE goes into a Uniswap LP to continue the perpetual funding.

This is a major advantage of this partnership — we are web3 since 2017 and authentic members of this ecosystem. We know how to get the most out of this funding! The trick is to spend money gradually in tandem with yield, not in big clumps like most esports companies do on single events. Also, ee have foundational partners that are taking care of the big expenses already. All events are funded fully; this AIP is just to see if Apes will be our first web3 sponsor. So to answer your question, the ApeDAO/Cxmmunity partnership is guaranteed in perpetuity — you have my personal word on that!

Yes, 1 $APE, but we’d have to do FCFS at events, of course — can’t fight the fire marshal

Comms and @ssp1111 IRL Events Group would be the main interfaces. I think it’s worth clarifying why AIP-219 is relevant even though IRL Events Group is happening. I believe AIP-219 acts as a force multiplier for the official ApeDAO IRL Events because AIP-219 focuses on a different audience — the completely 100% normies who would otherwise not touch web3 for another 2-3 years.

Did this answer? If not, happy to elaborate!


Hi ApeCoin DAO Community,

@Mantis has responded to our questions and they are in our review once again.

Follow this Topic as further updates will be posted here in the comments.

Kind Regards,


Thanks for the detailed answers. Looks compelling to me!

The times I have spent money money on marketing I accepted 50% would be wasted, but I didn’t know which 50%. Are there any KPIs you can use to assess how effectively this investment of funds is utilized?

Increase in wallets holding Apecoin, increase from gamers applying for grants or whatever makes most sense?


Just jumping in here to show support for IRL Events across the board and to share my own opinion about onboarding non-crypto users and other NFT projects via IRL Events – I say the more the merrier. Also, I’m here cause I was summoned :laughing:.

ApeCoinDAO is a global token and in my mind that means reaching as many communities as possible worldwide. This also means empowering local ambassadors and regional event professionals to host local/regional IRL events educating attendees about ApeCoin and onboarding builders, creators, founders, designers, etc into the DAO.

Esports and gaming have been identified as multi-billion dollar industries with global user-bases - Mantis’ IRL efforts to reach these demographics and audiences could be the spearhead leading ApeCoinDAO into this major ecosystem. The fact that he’s reaching generally underserved communities is nothing but a big win for the Web3 space as whole.

Thrilled to collaborate, work together, share resources, develop best practices, learn from each other for the betterment of the DAO.



This is a super great question that speaks to a huge issue we should all be concerned about — efficiency.

Two KPIs.

  1. Total wallets. Self-explanatory. Here’s the gamechanger:
  2. Cost per acquisition (CPA). We keep close tabs on CPA in Cxmmunity because it allows us to identify the most efficient onboarding activities.

An example: If you’ve got Activity A that brings 100 total new wallets with a CPA of $25.00 and Activity B that brings 10 new wallets with a CPA of $1.25, then you know you can get waaaaay more total wallets if you scale up Activity B.

Keeping up with total wallets without CPA can fool you into thinking that Activity A is the better play, but when you start keeping up with CPA, you get exponentially better results. This has been a gamechanger for us (3X’d our social media in the past 2 months), and we would apply the same strategy to our $APE funding to squeeze the most out of every piece of it.

Combine this with the defi strategy we discussed above (keeping the $APE as $APE and accessing more funding through BendDAO staking), and I think we have an ultra efficient marketing spend structure that keeps enough dry powder on the side at all times to scale up quickly if we find an event or procedure that finds superior product market fit.

At times, we’ve even had a negative burn rate. Let’s make that happen for the DAO as well.


Love that you track CPA. Too few projects in Web3 track it effectively.

Feels like it ties back to the Mission as well as the values around diversity and inclusion. IRL is so powerful and this specific target audience feels really interesting. Plus it positions ACD among big, credible names, and the cost feels attractive.

Really awesome. :fire:


Hi ApeCoin DAO Community,

We have no further questions for @Mantis. This AIP is now under Administrative Review.

Follow this Topic as further updates will be posted here in the comments.

Kind Regards,


Hi ApeCoin DAO Community,

Edits have been made to this Topic, by the author or by the authors request.

You can click the Pencil icon at the top of the post to see these edits.

Follow this Topic as further updates will be posted here in the comments.

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