OpenSea Claws Back Market-Share from Blur

The former NFT trading leader flipped Blur in volume and sales after incentives diminished.

By: Squiffs Loading...

OpenSea Claws Back Market-Share from Blur

OpenSea flipped Blur in 24-hour volume and total sales Wednesday, and has commanded the majority of unique buyers over the last 90 days.

OpenSea, crypto’s first NFT marketplace, founded in 2017, narrowly flipped Blur in terms of total sales count on June 26 for only the third time in the last 90 days, with 2,184 sales versus Blur’s 2,138.

NFT Market Places. Source: DappRadar

OpenSea also maintains a 39% user-share with 177,565 unique buyers compared to Blur’s 154,040 over the last 120 days.

This week’s “flippening” comes after the launch of the Blast token, which led to a decline in rewards for users, which had been driving activity in the last eight months. The diminishing incentives have led some of the largest market makers on Blur to take a step away from the protocol.

Despite OpenSea’s recent success, and beating its competitor in 24-hour volume, Blur still commands 62% of the total volume over the last 90 days.

Impact of Fewer Incentives

The impacts of Blur’s decreased incentives are yet to be seen and market participants remain split.

Blur farmer Cbb0fe recently took to social media and said, “NFT bagholders [are] about to be in absolute tears when they realize that as Blur farmers, we have just been exit liquidity to the smart holders.”

On the other end of the spectrum, NFT investor OGDFarmer recently said in a tweet, “no asset class with any maturity has ever evolved without multiple boom and bust cycles. NFT’s and their illiquid, crypto-adjacent nature will have that on steroids. It’s inevitable. Looking forward to the next couple of months.”

OpenSea Origins

OpenSea dominated the NFT marketplace scene throughout the 2021 bull run, processing over $100 million in sales per day during its peak. In January 2022, OpenSea announced it raised $300 million at a valuation of $13.3 billion.

However, in 2022 Blur launched its trader-focused NFT marketplace, and caught the attention of the market by incentivizing users through its airdrop and slashing creator royalties to increase traders’ profit margin. Blur also chose to penalize its users for interacting with competing marketplaces such as OpenSea.

After Blur’s highly successful airdrop, OpenSea drastically began to lose its market-share as participants moved to Blur to farm the second phase of its token distribution.

By November 2023 OpenSea had laid off over 50% of its staff and its lead investor, Coatue Management reduced the value it assigned to its $120 million investment into OpenSea by 90%, indicating the company's updated valuation is below $2 billion.

NFT Market's Blear Year

The NFT market as a whole is bouncing back after an initial selloff when the largest market maker on Blur, Cbb0fe, removed his liquidity on June 17. NFT Floor prices have since recovered with Pudgy Penguins, Bored Ape Yacht Club, and Milady all bouncing by over 5%. The CryptoPunks floor has rebounded back to 27 ETH, after sales dropped to as low as 22 ETH earlier this week.

The NFT market in 2024 has been bleak. Top collections such as Cryptopunks, Pudgy Penguins and Bored Ape Yacht club are down over 50% from their yearly highs and volumes have fallen significantly.

Blur’s rapid ascent as the dominant marketplace took place in just a few months back in 2022, but this week’s activity could mark the early signs of a comeback for OpenSea.