Kraken, a centralized cryptocurrency exchange based in the United States, has officially launched its non-fungible token marketplace. The company announced the end of the marketplace’s beta mode through a blog post yesterday and an accompanying Tweet.
Some of the key features of the marketplace separate it from competitors. NFT collectors won’t have to pay gas on any transactions, will be able to pay with cash and cryptocurrency, and have access to famous collections like Bored Ape Yacht Club as well as other collections with lower price points.
A Kraken spokesperson told Rarity Sniper that the company is bringing to the NFT space the same thing it brought to the crypto space: a secure, reliable and dynamic platform, designed to accelerate the adoption of digital assets like cryptocurrencies and NFTs. Kraken is reviewing collections at the smart contract level and users will have live support 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
“What is Kraken NFT bringing to the NFT space?“ they added. “The next billion users and beyond.“
Kraken’s marketplace launches with 250 collections on three blockchains: Ethereum, Polygon, and Solana. Notably, the collections include Reddit non-fungible tokens, which have been popular since their debut in 2022. While users won’t have to pay gas fees for marketplace transactions, they will have to do so if they want to move their NFT off the marketplace.
In addition, Kraken’s NFT market comes with rarity rankings built in, so that NFT traders can quickly see how rare a non-fungible token is before buying. The launch of the marketplace brings it up to date against its competitors. Coinbase and Binance already have NFT marketplaces, although they have struggled to gain traction against decentralized markets like OpenSea and Blur.
NFT Marketplaces a Crowded Field
Kraken’s NFT marketplace launch is big news, but it comes at a time when competition in the non-fungible token marketplace field is at an all-time high. Gone are the days when NFT enthusiasts would simply shop at OpenSea. Now, there are a plethora of options.
According to Dune, a Web3 analytics website, the top marketplaces by trader count revolve around three: OpenSea, Blur, and Gem. Check out the following bar graph that shows the number of traders in the past week per marketplace:
The trends show that while Blur was dominating daily trading activity in March, OpenSea and other marketplaces have slowly started a comeback. The image below shows the trend for daily trades among the top marketplaces in the past three months.
Each marketplace tends to appeal to a certain audience. Blur, for instance, tries to attract pro NFT traders that have a high volume of trades and rewards those users with tokens. OpenSea appeals to a more general audience, but even it has rolled out a pro version for traders.
A Kraken spokesperson told Rarity Sniper that while Kraken created its NFT marketplace to meet the needs of all collectors, its core features will appeal to newer enthusiasts. The goal is to encourage the next wave of ecosystem participants to discover everything NFTs have to offer in a fun, safe environment.
“We want to be the first platform consumers think about when they decide to dip their toe into the space,“ they added, “and we’re working hard to earn that reputation by creating positive experiences and associations both on and off the marketplace.“
Rarity Sniper will pay close attention to the Kraken NFT marketplace and report back with any future developments.