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EBay Expanding Foray Into Blockchain Technology And NFTs

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Online e-commerce giant eBay is expanding its foray into blockchain technology and Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) with its acquisition of NFT marketplace KnownOrigin, which provides the technology and platform for artists to create unique, authentic, digital collectibles, in the form of NFTs.

The deal combines eBay's reach and reputation with KnownOrigin's leading technology to empower a new wave of NFT creators, collectors, sellers and buyers at a time when interest in NFTs continues to grow.

This acquisition is an important step in eBay's massive tech-led reimagination, ushering in a new era of digital collecting to the world's top destination for collectibles. KnownOrigin will help lead eBay's NFT and digital collectibles strategy with the mission to bring web 3 capabilities to the platform.

Manchester, UK-based KnownOrigin has enabled artists and collectors to create, buy and resell NFTs via blockchain-support transactions since it was founded in 2018. It has revolutionized the way people create, buy, and sell NFTs.

"eBay is the first stop for people across the globe who are searching for that perfect, hard-to-find, or unique addition to their collection and, with this acquisition, we will remain a leading site as our community is increasingly adding digital collectibles," said Jamie Iannone, CEO of eBay.

KnownOrigin has built up an impressive, passionate and loyal group of artists and collectors making them a perfect addition to eBay's community of sellers and buyers.

eBay had begun allowing the buying and selling of NFTs in May 2021. It then launched its first collection of NFTs in mid-May 2022 through a strategic partnership with Green Web3 Company OneOf to make NFTs more accessible to a new generation of collectors everywhere. The collection included 3D and animated interpretations of Sports Illustrated covers of iconic athletes like Wayne Gretzky.

Priced for the everyday fan starting at $10, each NFT contained a 3D rendering or animation of Gretzky making a signature move on the ice. Throughout 2022, additional drops of OneOf's sports legends NFT series will take place in partnership with eBay, reinterpreting iconic Sports Illustrated covers in the era of Web3.

The surge in the collectibles market has fueled this first-ever collaboration between eBay and an NFT seller as well as the acquisition of an NFT marketplace now. A longtime leader in the collectibles space, eBay continues to introduce new tech capabilities and greater confidence to enthusiasts.

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