Venture Capital Investors Poured in $2.6B Into NFT Startups Last Year, a 2,500% Y/Y Growth

Startups linked to NFTs raised $2.6 billion from venture capital investors last year, an increase of about 2,500% from the $90 million raised in the previous year.
Image source: Medium/IrisNet blog

Quick take:

  • NFT-related startups raised $2.6 billion in seed, growth and private funding rounds.
  • This reflected a 25X growth from the previous year’s $90 million in total fundraising.
  • The fundraising featured 200 rounds according to a report published by Crunchbase.

Venture firms and individual investors injected $2.6 billion in funding to NFT-related startups over the past year. According to a report by Crunchbase, the funding featured seed, venture and growth funding rounds for about 200 companies with links to non-fungible tokens.

The total fundraising reflects a 25X growth from the previous year’s total of about $90 million, the report notes.

The NFT craze rocketed last year amid an influx of celebrities and mainstream companies seeking alternative ways of income generation. 

Although some companies fronted their NFT drops as a gesture of appreciation of their fans and a way of rewarding their customers, the subsequent fundraising campaigns indicate that companies have also benefitted from one of the internet’s trendiest buzzwords of the last 12 months.

Even though activity seems to be slowing based on the NFT transaction volume in leading marketplaces, they are still dominating headlines as demonstrated in this year’s SXSW festival in Austin, Texas. 

NFTs featured in panel discussions, hackathon competitions, as well as, festival merchandise, among other activities.

On Friday, creators of the famous Bored Apes NFT project, Yuga Labs acquired two of Larva Labs’ most popular projects, Cryptopunks and Meebits, again spicing the NFT collectibles space.

The Bored Apes Yacht Club and Cryptopunks collections are the most valuable NFT in the industry with a combined total value of about $3.6 billion.

Among the leading NFT fundraisings this year, was OpenSea, which raised $300 billion valuing the non-fungible token marketplace at about $13.3 billion.

On the other hand, Tom Brady’s Autograph an NFT marketplace that focuses on curated NFT works from celebrities raised $170 million in January, again demonstrating how NFTs have gained traction in segments that could define their future in the crypto space.

Animoca Brands, a Hong Kong-based blockchain fund that invests in NFTs and GameFi projects raised nearly $359 million in January too, which it has since invested significant sums in non-fungible tokens projects, gaming and metaverse worlds.

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