OpenSea Braces for New Beginnings with a Leaner Team
On November 3, the NFT marketplace giant OpenSea divulged a significant reduction in its workforce. Devin Finzer, the co-founder and CEO, shared this pivotal update on X (formerly Twitter), citing the reshaping of the team in anticipation of the OpenSea 2.0 launch.
Tracing the Roots: OpenSea’s Evolution
Established in 2017, during the nascent stages of the NFT craze, OpenSea has been akin to eBay or Etsy for digital collectibles, transacting in Ether. However, the road has not been without its bumps. Post the crypto winter, a 20% staff reduction was executed in July 2022, bringing the team size to 230. This move responded to the challenging market conditions, particularly for collectibles.
Reforging the Sea: Aiming for a Nimbler OpenSea 2.0
In the words of a company spokesperson, the recent layoff is a stride towards fostering a “more nimble” OpenSea. While the marketplace bids adieu to around 50% of its employees, especially trimming the middle management, it has pledged a substantial severance package. This includes four months of severance pay, accelerated equity vesting, and an extension of healthcare benefits for six months.
The Waning NFT Collectibles Market
The collectibles domain witnessed its zenith in 2021, after which a shift towards tokenizing assets and documents has been observed. The declining allure of collectibles has ostensibly nudged OpenSea towards this organizational reshuffle.
Community Reactions and Future Endeavours
OpenSea’s decision to retire the operator filter in August received a mixed bag of community responses, impacting collaborations with notable creators like Yuga Labs. Despite these hurdles, OpenSea’s resolve seems undeterred. As Devin Finzer mentioned, the journey towards OpenSea 2.0 will continue with public testing, even as the marketplace is hiring for 12 distinct roles, signaling a cautious yet hopeful outlook toward the future.
With a leaner team and a market in flux, the unveiling of OpenSea 2.0 is much anticipated, embodying the hopes of many for a reinvigorated NFT marketplace.