Shiba Inu's (SHIB -1.14%) performance this year is a far cry from last year. Back then, the popular meme token soared a mind-boggling 45,000,000%.

So far this year, it's been on the decline, but things may be turning around for Shiba Inu. It's climbed about 12% over the past month.

This crypto player also has a couple of catalysts on the horizon. Shiba Inu is launching a metaverse project and a layer-2 scaling solution. Could these and other efforts help it to eventually reach $1? Let's find out.

Shib Army support

Shiba Inu initially surged to fame thanks to its loyal fan base, known as the Shib Army, and they've invested in the meme token and promoted it across social media. This goes along with the general idea behind Shiba Inu at its creation. The token was meant to be "an experiment in decentralized spontaneous community building," according to its white paper.

But what is Shiba Inu exactly? It's a token running on the Ethereum blockchain. You can stake Shiba Inu and earn passive income or use it as a payment method. And now, those uses are expanding. Shiba Inu is opening up its metaverse project, which includes the sale of virtual land.

Shiba Inu started by making about 36,000 lots available this spring, but the goal is to sell more than 100,000 pieces of land. That will offer buyers access to a whole word of Shiba Inu activities. This metaverse project is one of the potential catalysts for Shiba Inu this year.

The second catalyst is Shibarium. That's the layer-2 scaling solution that will allow Shiba Inu to leave behind the congestion and high fees that go along with operating on Ethereum. The goal is to migrate to Shibarium at some point this year.

The coin-supply problem

Along with this, Shiba Inu also is tackling one of its biggest problems, which is coin supply. It opened a burn portal this past spring. This is meant to reduce the coin supply. The idea is right, and Shiba Inu today has about 549 trillion tokens in circulation, which trade for a fraction of a cent. If they were priced at $1 each, the market value of Shiba Inu would total $549 trillion.

By comparison, the whole cryptocurrency market was valued at about $3 trillion at its highest level last year. And major companies with a history of profit and revenue are valued lower, too. For example, Apple's market capitalization is about $2.3 trillion. Clearly, with this many tokens, Shiba Inu can't make it to $1.

Lowering the supply is key. But the problem is, even that effort isn't likely to work. To reach a market value of just under $1 trillion, 99% of today's token supply would have to be destroyed. That means most of today's Shiba Inu holders would have to burn their holdings -- and they wouldn't benefit from the cryptocurrency's eventual gains.

Yes, catalysts do lie ahead for Shiba Inu and may offer this cryptocurrency a lift. The effort to burn tokens could help the value of Shiba Inu edge higher in the near term, too. But considering today's circulating supply, these efforts can't fight against solid math, which is telling us that Shiba Inu isn't on the path to reaching $1.