01/09/2021 OneOf wants to be the NFT marketplace for people who don’t understand NFTs

Backed my music legend Quincy Jones, OneOf wants to make buying NFTs as easy as buying regular merch.

OneOf wants to be the NFT marketplace for people who don’t understand NFTs

Amid the fervor around NFTs, two pertinent issues came into focus: whether the process of creating tokens can be sustainable at scale, and whether the hype and inflated price tags often associated with NFTs will wind down to everyday, affordable transactions.

The founders at OneOf believe they have the answer for both.

Launching today, OneOf is a marketplace connecting music artists and their fans.

OneOf operates on the Tezos blockchain that, according to Tezos, uses 2 million times less energy than other networks. For comparison, a single transaction on the more popular Ethereum blockchain consumes the same amount of energyneeded to power a standard U.S. home for one and a half days. OneOf claims minting an NFT through its marketplace uses the same energy as sending a Tweet.

OneOf also has a tiered system for digital goods, which creates a wider range of buying options. NFTs are still largely associated with the astronomical sales that dominate headlines. While OneOf does offer pricier 1-of-1 sales, artists have the option of selling goods that run the gamut all the way to 1 of 100,000 tokens as low as $1, all of which can be purchased either through crypto or standard debit and credit cards.

“We’re interested in this bigger picture idea of, how do we get the next 100 million non-crypto users onto the blockchain ecosystem?” says Lin Dai, cofounder and CEO of OneOf. “If you think about the earliest use cases, it’s really around speculation. You purchase a coin and then it will rise in price. We didn’t think that was going to be the way to usher in the watershed moment for general adoption of blockchain.”

[Image: courtesy of OneOf]
“We had an ethos going into it, which is that we wanted 16-year-olds to be able to sign up and purchase an NFT in less than three minutes,” adds Joshua James, cofounder and COO. “Funding a crypto wallet can take hours, even if you are an expert at crypto.”

What’s also helping OneOf’s mission for mass adoption is its roster of talent. At launch, OneOf is working with major artists including Doja Cat, H.E.R., John Legend, Jacob Collier, Charlie Puth, Whitney Houston’s estate, and Quincy Jones, who’s also a backer.

“You can imagine with the amount of things that come Quincy Jones’s way—we say no to 90+% of what comes in our doors,” says Adam Fell, cofounder and board member of OneOf, and president of Quincy Jones Productions. “Since music streaming, nothing has come to us that we thought was truly paradigm shifting until [NFTs].”

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In addition to OneOf taking a more sustainable approach to NFT transactions and focusing on garnering a wider set of users, Fell says another deciding factor for Jones to get on board, and what could be appealing for skeptical users, is the fact that OneOf has been in development for more than two years, well before the hype of NFTs stormed the zeitgeist.

“I think our motivation is perhaps a little different than some of the other platforms that most recently pivoted their business to become NFT platforms,” Dai says. “We care about the 100 million non-crypto native users—educating them and bringing them into the fold, breaking down technology and economic barriers, versus a lot of other platforms where their primary business model is catered to crypto whales.”

For its first drop today at noon EST, OneOf is partnering with the iHeartRadio Music Festival for an NFT giveaway contest. The first artist-backed drop will be Doja Cat’s in early September. While there are no details yet on what Doja Cat’s sale will contain, OneOf, in a way, can be seen as merch 2.0 for artists.

“There’s all sorts of innovative ways that you can use NFTs to be merch,” Fell says. “You can make it so that you have to be in a certain geographical area, i.e., a festival, to claim certain merch. You can gamify that merch, which leads to different experiences or different perks, or the ability to buy specific physical things.”

“The idea is how do we make [OneOf] easy and how do we make it kind of attractive to the non-crypto fans?” Dai adds. “And music is more powerful than sports in some ways. What NBA Top Shot has done has really proven that NFTs around a passion point can really rally a fan base.”