NFT infrastructure platform startup NFTPort raises $26M
Estonian nonfungible token infrastructure startup NFTPort said Wednesday that it raised $26 million in new funding co-led by Taavet+Sten and Atomico.
The Series A round was also joined by Sparkle Ventures, IDEO CoLab Ventures, Filecoin creator Protocol Labs, Polygon co-founder Jaynti Kanani and many others.
NFTs are a type of peer-to-peer blockchain-based technology that provides a receipt of ownership for a digital object, such as a piece of artwork, an item in a videogame, files or anything that can be represented virtually. As a result, they have become the focus of a growing economy of digital collectibles, but they have many more use cases as well.
“We believe that NFTs are short-term overvalued, especially as they are portrayed today as collectibles but long-term undervalued because they enable true ownership and interoperability in a growing digital economy,” said Johannes Tammekänd, co-founder and chief executive of NFTPort.
Tammekänd added that NFTs could serve the purpose of breaking up Web 2.0 data silos by providing users actual ownership of their precious data. “This might be hard to grasp at first, but so was a few hundred years when people first gained land ownership, which brought equality and freedom into the society and gave birth to the modern economy,” Tammekänd said.
NFTPort’s infrastructure service provides application programming interfaces for developers to access NFT creation, called minting, and counterfeit detection. Currently supported blockchains include Ethereum, Polygon and Solana. Developers can quickly create, manage and deploy NFTs without needing to know any smart contract coding, NFTPort’s infrastructure governance manages all of that itself.
The idea behind NFTPort is to provide simple infrastructure and APIs for NFTs to allow developers to prototype and launch applications in a matter of hours instead of months.
According to the company’s internal metrics over 300,000 developer teams have put its infrastructure to use deploying NFTs. NFTPort also revealed that its service is in use by large-scale Web3 companies, including Protocol Labs and Nifty Gateway, which is part of the crypto exchange Gemini. Since March, developers using NFTPort minted over one million NFTs on the platform.
Although artwork and videogames are not the only use case for NFTs, they are the biggest market for the technology. The recent downturn in crypto markets, dubbed the “crypto crash,” has seen major crypto assets such as Ethereum – a major blockchain for NFTs – drop by 38% in the past seven days.
Along with that, the crypto market NFT markets are also down, with Bored Ape Yacht Club collectible NFTs falling almost 11%. Curiously, the trading volume went up, possibly because crypto assets are now available at lower cost.
NFTPort said it will use the fresh funding to scale its own infrastructure to support developers and offer more support for different blockchains. It also intends to hire more people to grow its team of 18 employees to more than 50.