Music-focused non-fungible token (NFT) platform OneOf has raised $63 million to support what it calls its mission to become a more environmentally sustainable marketplace for artists and fans.
Participating investors in the impressive seed funding round included environmental activist Bill Tai, Nima Capital’s Suna Said, Sangha Capital, tech investor Jack Herrick and the Tezos Foundation.
OneOf’s platform, which is built on the Tezos blockchain, will launch next month. Its first set of collectible releases is said to include music by the late Whitney Houston, Doja Cat, Quincy Jones, Jacob Collier and G-Eazy. Fans will be able to use credit or debit cards in over 135 fiat currencies, as well as cryptocurrencies and stablecoins, to purchase NFTs, said the firm.
OneOf CEO Lin Dai told CoinDesk the funding will be spent on expanding the team, building on top of the platform's existing technology and supporting independent artists. The company is also to run an “Emerging Artist Spotlight Program, with the first artists to include Laura Mvula, Barbara Doza, and Erick The Architect.
“Primarily, a large part of the funding will go towards working with artists to secure rights to their art in the form of music that could potentially be collectible,” said Dai.
OneOf is marketing its business as environmental, social and governance (ESG) friendly and targeting environmentally conscious music consumers. It was co-founded by Dai, alongside digital media executive Joshua James and music industry veteran Adam Fell, in partnership with Quincy Jones and Quincy Jones Productions.
Using Tezos’ blockchain technology, OneOf claims minting an NFT uses two million times less energy than other proof-of-work networks such as Ethereum. It’s also aimed to be cheaper, with the firm pledging to support zero-cost NFT minting for artists using the platform.
By using OneOf, artists will be able to create NFTs at more “affordable price points to be accessible to all fans,” the firm said in a press release Tuesday.
“We really can't get ourselves comfortable enough to really commit to the Ethereum platform largely because of the environmental impact and the high gas fees,” Dai said in an interview.
NFTs – cryptographic tokens used to link ownership and other rights to assets like art and collectibles, or even tweets – are becoming increasingly popular in the music industry as a way to engage with fans. Back in March, rock band Kings of Leon trotted out “golden tickets” for front row seats as part of an NFT album release.
Rapper Post Malone has also launched a concert streaming service, AUX Live, that mints NFTs and is said to bring together art and experience.
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