eBay has announced the acquisition of KnownOrigin, a Manchester-based NFT marketplace. Both companies signed and closed the deal on June 22, and financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.
eBay and KnownOrigin
As part of the deal, eBay is also acquiring all of KnownOrigin’s equipment and IP. The platform was founded in 2018, allowing artists and collectors to create, buy and resell NFTs through blockchain-supported transactions.
“eBay is the first stop for people around the world looking for that perfect, hard-to-find or unique addition to their collection and, with this acquisition, we will continue to be a leading site as our community is adding more and more digital collectibles,” said Jamie Iannone, CEO of eBay. “KnownOrigin has built an impressive, passionate and loyal group of artists and collectors, making them a perfect addition to our community of sellers and buyers. We look forward to welcoming these innovators as they join the eBay community.”
1/7 The mission was simple: could we build a new platform that would empower creators and give digital artists a chance to earn a living doing what they love. pic.twitter.com/X5zCkJHj1B
— KnownOrigin.io (@KnownOrigin_io) June 22, 2022
The acquisition follows eBay’s partnership with OneOf to launch its first NFT collection last month. Its first NFT “Genesis” collection features 3D and animated interpretations of iconic athletes who have graced the covers of Sports Illustrated over the years.
The first installment stars Canadian field hockey legend Wayne Gretzky.
Lanonne said in February that users are already selling NFTs on the platform and that the rise of the collectibles market has spurred this first collaboration between eBay and OneOf to bring NFTs to the masses.
While there are dozens of NFT marketplaces eBay would have to compete with, it would not have to start from scratch as its acquisition of KnownOrigin would give it an established team and customer base to work with.
“We founded KnownOrigin to empower creators and collectors by giving them the ability to showcase, sell and collect unique and authenticated digital items. As interest in NFTs continues to grow, we believe now is the perfect time to partner with a company that has the reach and expertise of eBay,” said David Moore, co-founder of KnownOrigin.
eBay’s acquisition of KnownOrigin represents the e-commerce giant’s entry into the NFT market.
The deal combines eBay’s reach and reputation with KnownOrigin’s technology to bring on board a new wave of NFT creators, sellers and buyers.
“With over twenty-five years of building similar communities of passionate individuals, we are excited about the opportunity to bring a whole new audience on this journey. This is the beginning of a new chapter in the KnownOrigin story and we couldn’t pick a better time to focus on building and innovating with the eBay team. This partnership will help us attract a new wave of NFT creators and collectors,” added Moore.
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