OpenSea is making a move to squash whispers that it has met its match in the newly launched platform LooksRare. To edge out its competitors and further grow the business, the decacorn startup onboarded a new CTO.
Yesterday, we reported that the leading NFT Marketplace acquired crypto wallet startup Dharma to push boundaries this 2022. With the acquisition, Dharma Labs’ Co-Founder and CEO Nadav Hollander will join OpenSea as its new Chief Technology Officer.
Who is OpenSea’s New CTO?
Hollander is a seasoned leader from the early Ethereum community. In addition, “he built, launched and evangelized some of the most influential protocols and products in the DeFi space.”
In a blog post, OpenSea’s CEO Devin Finzer expressed his delight to have Hollander’s fresh, crypto-native expertise to OpenSea’s leadership. He is confident that the new CTO’s impact will be wide-reaching, particularly in two aspects. Firstly, in improving the technical reliability and uptime of products. Then, building web3-native mechanisms for engaging with and rewarding the early and loyal community.
In a Twitter thread, Hollander gave an overview of his plans. What stood out the most is his indirect confirmation that OpenSea is finally giving in to the clamor of its users by releasing its own token.
He said, “My goal is to evangelize the embrace of “strong” decentralized technologies within OpenSea. Users of OpenSea ought to be rewarded for the value they bring to the platform. Crypto primitives give us the most powerful tools for doing this.”
This will be a huge blow to LooksRare because one of the things that separated it from OpenSea is its utility token $LOOKS. The new platform actually airdropped these tokens to existing OpenSea users. So just imagine how OpenSea-issued tokens will light up Crypto Twitter!
Here’s how we got here, and some of the challenges I’m excited about 👇🏻
— Nadav Hollander (@NadavAHollander) January 18, 2022
The Industry Landscape
Clearly, OpenSea is strengthening its backbone and addressing user pain points. This is the beauty of competition. Ultimately, the users tend to benefit because as industry players fight for a share in the market, the user experience dramatically improves.
LooksRare made a splash in the NFT scene by claiming to address OpenSea’s shortcomings. For example, LooksRare has a lower transaction fee of 2% in comparison to the 2.5% fee on OpenSea. What’s more, it promises to give 100% of all platform fees to those who stake the $LOOKS token.
As the market leader, OpenSea suffered through all the birth pains of a new industry. It is being criticized for representing centralization after freezing $2.2 Million worth of stolen NFTs. In addition, many users find its verification process ambiguous and puzzling. As early as now, LooksRare is facing its own set of issues like wash trading and lack of public audit for its code.
So which platform will reign supreme this 2022? As always, it will be the platform with the best customer experience. This will be a huge challenge, especially now NFT projects are moving to target non-crypto and less tech-savvy users.