eBay announced Tuesday that users can now sell NFTs in its marketplace. In the beginning, the option to list NFTs will be available to ‘trusted sellers’ in categories like entertainment, art, and trading cards.
“Any form of collecting is about the convergence of passion, interest, and opportunity. We’ve seen this play out in the physical world and now we’re seeing a transition to digital, said Jordan Sweetnam, Ebay’s SVP & General Manager, North America.
“NFTs offer greater access to a broader audience of collectors and creators…We plan to double down on this idea – combining eBay’s global reach with the principle that anyone can find almost anything on our platform,” he added.
eBay expects this introduction of NFTs to help them learn more about the preferences of their users. The company plans on enhancing capabilities in a direction that attracts blockchain-based collectibles.
At the beginning of the month, eBay CEO Jamie Iannone said that the company is considering including cryptocurrency as a payment method. Talking to CNBC, he said, “We are expanding the types of payments that we take…We will continue to look at other options, like cryptocurrency.”
“One of the great things about eBay is that when there is a new trend, it just shows up on eBay. That’s what we are seeing in areas like NFTs [non-fungible tokens], which we are looking at how we can explore that better,” he added.
Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are arguably the hottest topic in the crypto community at present. In broad terms, an NFT is a digital asset that exists on a blockchain. The asset could be anything, including a picture, a video, a tweet, a text, etc.
The concept of NFTs has been around for years, but it has recently come to the fore after some high-value purchases of artist’s work. For instance, Beeple sold a piece of their digital art for over $69 million, and Zoe Roth, the woman in the popular Disaster Girl meme, sold her original photo for $473,000.
There are several NFT marketplaces and some traditional markets also hold NFT sales. (For instance, Beeple’s $69 million NFT was sold by Christie’s Auction house.)
One of the popular markets is Opensea. Opensea.io is an Ethereum-based platform for rare items and crypto collectibles. The list of items sold on the platform includes images, videos, 3D art, and audio.
NBA Top Shot is another popular market. The platform sells licensed NBA collectibles.
Nifty Gateway is yet another option for NFT sellers. The marketplace has two sections: one for popular artists and one for collectors.
San Jose-California-based eBay is a public company known for its auction services and C2C sales. The company has 187 million buyers, according to its CEO.
Besides offering NFTs and considering crypto as payment, the company has also taken other steps to stay competitive. For instance, it recently announced a loan program in the U.K. These loans will be offered to businesses that sell through the marketplace.
The Capital for eBay Business Sellers program will initially lend ‘between £500 and £1m to the 300,000 small and medium-sized businesses,’ according to the Financial Times.