OpenSea may lead the world of Ethereum NFT marketplaces, but there’s a separate ecosystem gaining steam on the Solana blockchain—and Magic Eden has a similarly commanding lead in that space. Today, Magic Eden announced that it's raised $27 million to expand its ambitions.
The Series A round was led by Paradigm, with participation from Sequoia, Solana Ventures, Greylock, Kindred, Electric, and Variant. Magic Eden plans to use the funds to hire more employees, build out its gaming vertical, explore partnerships, and develop a full-service mobile app for buying and selling NFTs.
“Magic Eden will be much more than a place for users to purchase NFTs,” co-founder and CEO Jack Lu said in a statement. “Our goal is to make a clear distinction between Web2 and Web3, allowing creators, collectors, and supporters to engage with each other and lead the direction of their online interactions.”
Magic Eden commands an overwhelming share of the Solana NFT market. According to data from analytics firm DappRadar, Magic Eden has generated about $461 million worth of NFT trading volume over the past 30 days, compared with just $12 million for the next-highest Solana marketplace, Solanart.
In any case, the Ethereum-based marketplace OpenSea has a wide overall lead in the NFT market, logging some $2.19 billion worth of trading volume in the past 30 days, per DappRadar.
Magic Eden and its investors are betting that more and more users will gravitate toward a platform with lower fees and a cheaper average NFT sale price. Magic Eden is already generating more monthly transactions, with 4.64 million over the past 30 days compared with 2.28 million for OpenSea.
— OpenSea (@opensea) January 26, 2022
However, OpenSea may soon challenge Magic Eden directly. In January, leaked screenshots from noted blogger and hacker Jane Manchun-Wong showed Solana integration on OpenSea, which has yet to be officially announced or added to the platform.
An NFT acts like a deed of ownership to a unique digital item, often artwork, collectibles, or video game items. The wider market reached $25 million in total trading volume in 2021, with the vast majority of that coming from Ethereum.
In February, Magic Eden announced the launch of a DAO, or decentralized autonomous organization, called MagicDAO. The DAO will let users who hold a Magic Ticket NFT—airdropped for free to top users—have a say in the future of the marketplace.