Meet The First NFT Billionaires: OpenSea Founders Worth Billions After New Fundraising
| 3 minutes read
- OpenSea is an online NFT (non-fungible token) marketplace
- The company was founded in 2017
- OpenSea has raised over USD 420 million from investors
The first Non-Fungible Token (NFT) was introduced in 2015 to the world, but it recently made a lot of buzzes and it gained traction globally. As we can see the leaders and entrepreneurs are getting more involved in this tech trend, a few pioneers have made, seriously they have shocked the world and they become the first NFT billionaires.
OpenSea Founders Worth Billions approximately $2.2 billion each, according to a report published.
Finzer and Atallah founded OpenSea, an online marketplace for non-fungible tokens, in December 2017. Five years later, the online marketplace has received fresh funding that values the company at $13.3 billion.
This is a massive and outstanding leap from OpenSea’s $1.5 billion value just six months ago. The founders’ have an estimated stake of 18.5% in OpenSea, which gives them an astounding value of $2.2 billion each.
OpenSea is one of the first players in the NFT market. It allows users of the platform to create, sell and buy all kinds of NFTs with a 2.5% cut for every sale. Five people started the company and the company has grown to over 4,000 active users engaging in monthly transactions worth around $1.2M in March 2020.
OpenSea earned around $29,000 in monthly revenue for that year, but its operation turned the table in Q1 2021 when other NFT competitors pulled the attention for auctioning high-end digital art.
In July 2021, OpenSea closed a $100M funding round via Andreessen Horowitz capital venture firm and recorded around $350M monthly transactions. In August 2021, the monthly transactions reached $3.4 billion, which netted the company an astounding $86M from commissions.
Founders Finzer worked as a software engineer on Pinterest in 2015 and co-founded his first startup called Claimdog, which he later sold to Credit Karma.
Alex Atallah graduated from Stanford and worked at Palantir. He later worked at Silicon Valley startups Whatsgodly and Zugata. They both are 30 years old.
OpenSea’s planned strategy and dare to take risks
Let’s take the time back to November 2020. In a restaurant in New York’s New Margaritaville Resort Times Square, Alex Atallah sits next to a 32-foot-tall replica of the Statue of Liberty. Unlike the real Statue of Liberty, this replica is not holding a torch, but a cocktail. Alex Atallah is sitting there because he was invited to attend the third annual NFT.NYC conference, which attracted 6,000 registrants, of which 4,000 were on the waiting list. Young NFT enthusiasts wore a sweatshirt printed with Bored Ape Yacht Club and wandered into the hotel to express their tribute to the NFT based on the image of the ape. NFT has become more than just collectibles or investment items, but has become a social tool.
Devin Finzer explained that in addition to casting the net, another reason for OpenSea to flourish is that it “appeared in the right place at the right time.” More importantly, they are willing to listen to users. The platform tracks NFTs on Ethereum and other blockchains. All purchases are made in encrypted mode. Sellers can choose a fixed price or auction format. Artists can set the percentage of commission for each NFT resale. Ultimately, Devin Finzer believes that the NFT ownership verification model applies to everything from concert tickets to real estate, he is just not sure when it will succeed. “My view of the future has always been very gloomy”-Devin Finzer said.
OpenSea still faces huge risks, such as fraud, and market competition.
In October 2021, Coinbase, the investor of OpenSea, the largest cryptocurrency trading platform in the United States, announced that it would launch its own NFT P2P market. Within a few weeks, the waiting list for the Coinbase NFT platform attracted 2.6 million registrations, and Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong foretold that the new NFT business “may be as large as its core crypto trading business, or even more. Big”.
Devin Finzer said that OpenSea is working on a method to automatically identify counterfeit products and has hired a moderator who is responsible for investigating doubtful products. But despite this, there will still be problems with human participation-in September 2021, Devin Finzer ordered the resignation of the OpenSea product director because Twitter users discovered that shortly before some NFTs appeared on the OpenSea homepage, a crypto wallet related to the executive These NFTs are being purchased-in other words, he obtained these NFTs before OpenSea launched related products.
History of OpenSea
According to Pitchbook data, OpenSea has raised over $420 million from investors since its inception. It has unceasingly faced stiff competition from other crypto giants like Coinbase, which announced plans to launch its NFT exchange.
Despite all scams and uncertainties involved in the crypto world and NFT market, there is quite a huge potential in terms of heavy money.
Suprotik Sinha is the Content Writer with Synkrama Technologies. He writes about technologies and startups in the global enterprise space. An animal lover, Suprotik, is a postgraduate from Symbiosis Institute of Mass Communication (SIMC) Pune. He carries 6+ years of experience in Content Writing, and he also worked in mainstream broadcast media, where he worked as a Journalist with Ibn7 ( now known as News18 India) and Zee Media in Mumbai.