Non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace OpenSea is debuting an investment arm following its raising $300 million at a $13.3 billion valuation last month, the company announced Friday (Feb. 11).
The new faction, called OpenSea Ventures, will focus on growing the Web 3 ecosystem with more NFTs, decentralized systems and other uses of blockchain, the company said in a blog post.
In addition, OpenSea is debuting Ecosystem Grants, which it said will offer funding for various people working with NFTs, including creators, developers and “passionate community members.” The fund will be led by Alex Attalah, a co-founder of OpenSea.
The portfolio companies will have access to the company’s strategic partners such as Andreessen Horowitz, Standard Crypto, Animoca Brands and Kevin Hartz’s A* Capital.
PYMNTS wrote recently that OpenSea has acquired Dharma Labs, a digital wallet service. According to OpenSea CEO Devin Finzer, the teams think NFTs will be the most important facet of the cryptosphere in the coming years.
See also: NFT Marketplace OpenSea Acquires Dharma Labs
Finzer said the vision “can only be realized if using NFTs becomes easy and delightful for the average person,” so the partnership would be necessary.
“Ultimately, we believe this union will be a force multiplier for NFTs and Web 3 adoption, and help us dramatically improve the experience of buying, minting and selling NFTs on OpenSea — whether you’re a beginner or a pro,” he said at the time.
OpenSea will also take on Dharma Labs’ CEO and co-founder Nadav Hollander as its new chief technology officer.
Hollander, they said, has “deep roots” in ethereum and has spent his career making systems that “adeptly mask the complexities of smart contracts and blockchains” for everyday consumers, per the report. Finzer said Hollander will have a wide impact and will focus on boosting the technical reliability and uptime of products.