OpenSea investor marks down stake in platform by 90%: Report

OpenSea investor marks down stake in platform by 90%: Report

November 8, 2023

United States tech investment firm Coatue Management has marked down the value of its stake in nonfungible token (NFT) platform OpenSea by 90%.

On Nov. 7, The Information reported on a document it reviewed showing that Coatue had reduced its investment from $120 million to $13 million — implying that OpenSea has fallen to an on-paper valuation of $1.4 billion.

Coatue also marked down its investment in Web3 payment provider MoonPay by 90%.

In January 2022, OpenSea raised $300 million in a Series C round led by crypto venture capital firm Paradigm and Coatue. The outsized investment saw the NFT platform valued at $13.3 billion.

Following a stubborn bear market and a year-long slump in NFT trading activity, OpenSea announced a 50% reduction in staff on Nov. 3 as part of its plan to relaunch as OpenSea 2.0.

OpenSea CEO Devin Fizner said the new version of the platform will focus on upgrading its technology and increasing its speed and quality. To Fizner, a smaller team will allow the platform to remain “nimble and attentive.”

Related: Elon Musk slams NFTs but ends up arguing the case for Bitcoin Ordinals

In August, OpenSea faced criticism after it announced it was retiring its operator filter, a feature that allowed creators to blacklist non-royalties enforcing marketplaces.

Coatue’s markdown comes amid a slump in NFT trading volumes. The sector peaked in 2021, recording over $14 billion in sales during the year. Since then, NFT popularity has been on the decline, with overall trading volumes dropping by 80% since March 2022.

A Nov. 3 report from crypto data firm DappRadar found the NFT market recorded its first month of gains in over a year, notching a $99-million increase month-over-month in October.

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