Former US President, Donald Trump has raked in US $1.4 million from selling NFT “trading cards” of himself. Prices of the digital trading cards, which were originally priced at US $99 apiece, rose to thousands of dollars, before selling out completely.

Trump’s “major announcement” came last week when he released the limited-edition of 45,000 virtual trading cards, which he likened to baseball cards. The trading cards, which were licensed and owned by NFT INT LLC, featured images, which Trump said, pertain to his own life.

Some of the images show him as a racecar driver, astronaut, boxer, sheriff and elephant rider. One card even featured Trump holding the torch of the Statue of Liberty. That particular NFT trading card was sold for US $24,000 on OpenSea, the popular NFT trading marketplace.

Buyers of the Trump NFT trading cards were entered into a sweepstakes at the time of purchase, where they could win prizes, which included a dinner with Trump in Miami, a group cocktail hour at Mar-A-Lago, a one-on-one meeting with the 45th President, a golf session with Trump and friends, Zoom sessions and signed memorabilia.

On the Trump Digital Trading Cards website, the Trump collection claimed to be sold out and the floor price for a single card has risen to US $177.99. The Trump Cards Collection site also included a disclosure that the Trump collection is “not owned, managed or controlled” by Trump or his companies and instead licensed to NFT INT LLC. The LLC has no website.

The entire money will go directly to Trump, rather than his presidential campaign, because the NFT trading cards are neither a project of his 2024 bid nor a campaign merchandise offering. Instead, the NFT appear to be an extension of Trump’s business portfolio. Some even suggest that the former president may be attempting to ‘defend his brand’, as he faces mounting questions about the strength of his presidential campaign.

Trump’s announcement about the release of NFT drew instant mockery from Democrats, liberals, late-night hosts and from some Trump loyalists too. Allies of Trump have been distancing themselves from his latest business venture, hours after the release of the NFT collection.

Some allies, who were alerted to the NFT project before it went live, tried to convince Trump to hold off, as they believed the move would distract from his 2024 campaign. But, Trump proceeded with the announcement and launched it just hours before his campaign made its first policy-related announcement. Some sources also said Trump considers the venture a success so far, as it pulled in seven figures within the first 24 hours of his debut NFT launch.

Even the current US President, Joe Biden, who is usually not known as an effective social media troll, boasted that he had some year-end “major announcement” of his own, including lowering gas prices, keeping the economy growing and enacting protection for same-sex marriages.

Sources told CNN that Trump was shown the online criticism of his allies and supporters and understood their response and Trump indicated that he was happy that he did it. Trump has not officially responded to the criticism of his NFT launch and his campaign has been silent on the matter.