As part of the announcement, OpenSea emphasised that “Buyers will no longer have to pay blockchain fees when making trades on OpenSea”, and also announced extended support for Polygon.
When cryptocurrency startup OpenSea announced a $100 million Series B investment round headed by venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, it became the first crypto unicorn with a market capitalization of $1.5 billion.
Generally speaking, unicorn companies are those with a market capitalization of more than $1 billion, and OpenSea now joins the ranks of other crypto unicorns such as Coinbase, Animoca Brands, and Chainalysis, to mention a few.
We’re expanding! Announcing our $100M raise and $1.5B valuation, led by @a16z
OpenSea is also now cross-blockchain. NFTs that you create can now be gas-free, allowing creators to fully earn their way into crypto for the first time
Details ↯ https://t.co/EeQfyZTxUA 1/2— OpenSea (@opensea) July 20, 2021
Participation in the fundraise came courtesy of Coatue, a hedge fund and private equity business that received backing from celebrities such as former Walt Disney president Michael Ovitz, actor Ashton Kutcher, and basketball player Kevin Durant.
With the announcement of the $100 million fundraising round, OpenSea also formally announced increased blockchain support, which will begin with a “gas-free” marketplace built on Polygon, an Ethereum layer 2 scaling solution.
“Buyers no longer have to pay blockchain fees when making trades on OpenSea, and creators can fully earn their way into crypto for the first time,” the firm stated.
As reported by TechCrunch, OpenSea is also looking to increase support for Dapper Lab’s Flow blockchain in the future, in addition to Tezos and Ethereum.
One of the top NFT marketplaces in the industry has seen significant growth in recent funding rounds, including a $23 million Series A round in March, which was also led by Andreessen Horowitz. The latest funding round demonstrates the company’s continued growth after its Series A funding round in March.
Although OpenSea did not directly indicate what the cash would be used for, according to a Forbes storey, the funds will be used to expand the team, develop additional cross-chain functionality, and improve the user experience on the platform. Kathryn Haun, a general partner at Andreessen Horowitz, will also be joining the board of directors of OpenSea, according to the company.
OpenSea also revealed that it has plans to launch new initiatives in the future to complement its NFT marketplace, including the following:
“Our broader mission is to help create the systems and standards that enable the conversion of all types of digital wealth into forms that are truly ownable and freely exchangeable.”
While there has been a general cooling off of enthusiasm for the NFT over the past few months, Cointelegraph announced on July 7 that NFT sales in the first half of 2021 surpassed $2.5 billion.
A total of 553,000 transactions generated a total of $181.92 million in volume on the OpenSea marketplace over the course of the last 30 days, according to data from DappRader.