After Raising Another $300 Million in Funding, NFT Marketplace OpenSea Is Now Valued at an Extraordinary $13.3 Billion
Founded just four year ago, OpenSea is now a darling of venture capitalists looking for big returns on investment.
OpenSea, one of the world’s most popular NFT marketplaces, has raised $300 million in its latest round of funding, the company announced yesterday.
A sign of investors’ rapidly growing appetite for blockchain start-ups, the new injection of capital brings OpenSea’s valuation to an eye-popping $13.3 billion just four years after it was founded.
In the announcement, co-founder and CEO Devin Finzer explained that the company would use the money to significantly grow its current staff of roughly 90 employees. Special emphasis will be placed on OpenSea’s customer support and trust and safety teams, Finzer said, with a plan to double those departments’ 60-some employees by the end of this year.
Additionally, the start-up will launch a grant program to support creators in the NFT space this quarter.
“In 2021, we saw the world awaken to the idea that NFTs represent the basic building blocks for brand new peer-to-peer economies,” Finzer wrote. “They give users greater freedom and ownership over digital goods, and allow developers to build powerful, interoperable applications that provide real economic value, and utility to users.”
“OpenSea’s vision,” he added, “is to become the core destination for these new open digital economies to thrive, building the world’s friendliest and most trusted NFT marketplace with the best selection.”
The series-C funding round was led by investment firms Coatue Management and Paradigm. Kathryn Haun—OpenSea’s only board member other than its two founders, Finzer and Alex Atallah—also contributed through her new crypto fund KRH, according to the tech newsletter Newcomer.
Haun previously co-chaired a crypto fund for Andreessen Horowitz, the venture capital firm that led OpenSea’s $100 million series B fundraising round last July. Basketball star Kevin Durant and actor Ashton Kutcher contributed during that stage, at which point the company was valued at $1.5 million.
Last week, art dealer Todd Kramer of New York’s Ross and Kramer Gallery claimed that 15 NFTs, including several Bored Apes, altogether worth an estimated $2.2 million, had been stolen from his Ethereum wallet.
In a controversial move, OpenSea subsequently “froze” the digital assets, meaning they could no longer be traded on the platform, causing some in the crypto community to question the company’s commitment to decentralization.
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