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Two New Yorkers have become the first ever NFT billionaires

Ash Jurberg

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Last week Forbes released its annual list of billionaires.

In total, there are 2,668 billionaires around the world. But two of them were very different from the rest. They became the first-ever NFT billionaires.

Let's look at their story.

The 2 New Yorkers who became the first-ever NFT billionaires

First, let's look at exactly what a non-fungible token (NFT) is.

According to Forbes, an NFT is "a digital asset that represents real-world objects like art, music, in-game items and videos. They are bought and sold online, frequently with cryptocurrency, and they are generally encoded with the same underlying software as many cryptos."

Although NFTs have been around since 2017, they really took off last year. And two men from New York made the most of the opportunity.

31-year-old Devin Finzer and 30-year-old Alex Atallah founded New York-based OpenSea in 2018. OpenSea is a marketplace for nonfungible tokens, and thanks to the demand in NFTs, the duo both have a net worth of $2.2 billion.

OpenSea has launched projects with the NBA’s Golden State Warriors and singer-songwriter Shawn Mendes.

Devin Finzer

Finzer attended Brown University, and while still in his junior year, he created CourseKick, a socially-oriented search engine for university course registration. After graduating, he worked at Pinterest as a software engineer before launching Claimdog, a personal finance app he sold to Credit Karma.

It was then that he met Alex Atallah.

Alex Atallah

Atallah grew up in Colorado and attended Stanford.

After graduation, he worked as a programmer at Palantir and two other startups before founding OpenSea with Finzer.

The New York company now has 200 employees, 600,000 users, 80 million NFTs, and over $20 billion in volume. This has led to private investors valuing their company at $13.3 billion.

And making the duo the first-ever NFT billionaires.

Readers, what do you think of their story? Do you think there is long-term success in NFTs, or is it a short-term fad? What do you think the future holds for OpenSea?

Please leave your comments in the section below.

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