NFT Marketplace Rarible Closes $1.75M Seed Raise From 1kx, Coinbase Ventures

Non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace Rarible is building a “Uniswap for NFTs” and has fresh dough to get it done.

The token startup has raised $1.75 million from early-stage fund 1kx to broaden its decentralized market venue to include a new governance structure, co-founders Alex Salnikov and Alexei Falin told CoinDesk in a phone interview.

Rarible’s round was joined by Coinbase Ventures, ParaFi Capital and CoinFund, among others.

The new funds will be allocated for building out a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) structure for the buying and selling of NFTs on Rarible, the startup said in a press release. Funds will also be used for researching decentralized solutions for buying and selling NFTs.

“There’s no place to do that in a decentralized way. We are trying to build a decentralized approach, a Uniswap for NFTs,” Falin said.

Rarible currently supports two token standards, the ERC-1155 and ERC-721. Both are used almost exclusively in NFT markets while Ethereum’s burgeoning decentralized finance (DeFi) markets use the more common ERC-20 standard.

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Salnikov said the startup is also building out a “multi-chain strategy” and will “support several of them” in the near future.

The addition comes during a hot time for NFT markets. OpenSea, the premier platform for buying and selling tokenized collectibles, posted some $1.9 million in sales volume on Feb. 1.

“NFTs are entering a phase of interesting experimentation beyond their basic use cases, becoming a platform for permissionless innovation and unlocking killer uses that we cannot even imagine yet,” 1kx co-founder Lasse Clausen said in a statement. “Rarible is one of the best-positioned platforms in the ecosystem to promote and accelerate the open experimentation of NFTs.”

Rari has recently garnered celebrity attention. Rapper Soulja Boy created his own NFT in his likeness followed by Dallas Mavericks basketball team owner Mark Cuban, who sold his NFT at auction for 30 ether (ETH) worth some $15,000.

“What we’re seeing in 2021 is early product-market fit with artists, creators, and collectors of digital non-fungible assets,” CoinFund founder Jake Brukhman said in a statement. “We are extremely excited to support Rarible from the pre-seed round to the present round in building a platform for this new asset class for the modern digital world.”