The most popular NFT selling platform is also suffering from the “crypto winter”. She announced she was separating from a fifth of her employees.
There is currently nothing going right with cryptos. Falling prices since early 2022, repeated bankruptcies… The whole industry is holding its breath and waiting for the end of ” crypto winter », the name given to it « bear market (you see: a market in crisis), hoping not to be part of the growing number of companies going out of business.
NFTs are not spared during this crisis period. OpenSea, the best known and most popular sales platform non-exchangeable tokens (NFT), just announced on July 14, 2022 that it will be separating nearly 20% of its employees. A worrying signal for the entire sector.
Blame “crypto winter”
The bad news was announced by Devin Finzer, the co-founder and leader of OpenSea, on his Twitter account. ” We have made the terribly sad and difficult decision to reduce the size of our team by 20%, and today we say goodbye to many of our friends. He wrote. He did not say how many people will be affected by the move, but OpenSea told The Block newspaper that there are now 230 employees at the company.
The decision was prompted by the “crypto winter” and “ global macroeconomic instability said Devin Finzer. We need to prepare the company for the possibility of a prolonged recession But what the director doesn’t say in his post is that NFT sales are plummeting.
According to data from Nonfungible, a site specializing in the analysis of these digital assets, NFT sales have fallen since the beginning of the year – despite a spike in sales in May, due entirely to the sale of a new Bored Ape Yacht Club collection.
Above all, it is not only the number of sales themselves that is falling, but also the total value of the NFTs traded, a very important indicator that indicates the health of the market. While in April, for just over 61,000 NFTs sold, the total sales amount was $83 million, in this July only $29 million was harvested for the same amount.
And inevitably, the various NFT selling platforms suffer from this overall decline. Data from various analysts, collected by The Block, shows the scale of the disaster. OpenSea went from total revenues of $4.97 billion in January 2022, its biggest month ever, to 686 million in June 2022. For competitor LooksRare, the damage is even worse: it’s gone from a sales total of 11 billion when it closed in January. 2022 was launched to just 214 million in June.
In the months or even weeks that follow, it is therefore not surprising to hear that other NFT platforms are also making the decision to lay off some of their workforce.
The end of NFTs has been predicted several times. The first time, in June 2021, when the market had undergone an initial transformation and the collectible coins (like the CryptoPunks or the Bored Apes) took precedence over “art” NFTs (like the Beeples coin which sold for a record $69 million). By May 2022, analysts had again announced the death of NFTs, even as the Bored Apes broke records. But this time, the combined effect of the crypto winter and “ global macroeconomic instability as Devin Finzer puts it, may well prevail non-exchangeable tokens.