Amid the growing global interest around Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) one of South Korea’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges Bithumb is planning to launch an NFT marketplace in order to stay competitive in the space and ‘promote blockchain-based digital content.’
NFT Craze Hits South Korea
As per data from market tracker DappRadar sales of NFTs crossed $25 billion in 2021 as the digital art asset industry exploded in popularity.
While many were early adopters of the NFT wave including South Korean exchanges like Korbit and Upbit, others like Bithumb seem to be keen on making strides in the same direction.
In a January 13 interview, Bithumb CEO Heo Baek-young stated that the exchange was in process of developing an NFT exchange that would help the company ‘stay competitive’ with other domestic Korean exchanges. He further added:
“An NFT marketplace will be important in promoting blockchain-based content, which will become a driving force in the future.”
In addition to that, many South Korean news outlets have reported that the upcoming Bithumb NFT marketplace could be developed in collaboration with tech giant LG CNS. On the contrary, Bithumb officials have not confirmed any such collaborations.
“It is true that we have been preparing for an NFT exchange. But, it is impossible to confirm whether LG CNS is single or is in discussion with multiple companies,” officials were reported as saying.
How Does the NFT Landscape Look?
As per data from CoinGecko, Bithumb stood second in terms of 24-hour trade volumes while Upbit took the top spot at press time. Nonetheless, Bithumb had the highest trust score (liquidity, overall trading volume, order book depth, and spread) of 8 while Upbit and Korbit followed with a score of 7.
Upbit and Korbit were early to the NFT party and launched their own NFT marketplaces in November and June 2021 respectively. Upbit’s NFT exchange garnered decent attention after securing exclusive NFT content from several K-pop groups including BTS.
That said, while it may seem like Bithumb is late to the party the constantly growing NFT space would still open plenty of doors in terms of general and business growth for the exchange in the future.