Not-Yet-Launched Coinbase NFT Platform Already Hits 1 Million Waitlist Signups

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Just a day after announcing it was launching an NFT marketplace, Coinbase’s waitlist reached 1 million signups.

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“Over 1M people have signed up for Coinbase NFT since we launched yesterday,” CEO Brian Armstrong tweeted.

Coinbase NFT is a peer-to-peer marketplace that will make minting, purchasing, showcasing and discovering NFTs easier than ever, the company said in an announcement. “Just as Coinbase helped millions of people access Bitcoin for the first time in an easy and trusted way — we want to do the same for the NFTs,” the company said.

“We just announced the upcoming launch of Coinbase NFT. We are getting a LOT of signups — so grateful for all your interest. We are seeing insane loads on our servers and our team is working hard to get this resolved. Check back soon! #Coinbase,” Coinbase’s vice president of product Sanchan Saxena tweeted in response.

NFTs have seen increasing interest this year. Daily sales peaked near $268 million in late August, according to tracker Nonfungible, Bloomberg reported.

Coinbase, which started its Nasdaq listing in April in one of the most anticipated initial public offerings of 2021, as this was the first crypto exchange to go public, acknowledged in August it had stockpiled cash in the event of a “crypto winter,” GOBankingRates previously reported.

“The wind is in our sails right now, and it feels good. But crypto is a young volatile industry and there will come a day when times are harder. We know this because we’ve experienced major crypto winters where financing was difficult to get, partners cut us off, and we lost large parts of our employee base. Tension gets high during these times. We’ve sustained by enduring, and not over-reacting. It’s never as good as it seems, and it’s never as bad as it seems,” the company said in a letter to shareholders in August.

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The foray into NFTs could help the company stand out among competitors such as Robinhood.

NFTs are the “next frontier” for Coinbase and could become a lucrative business for the exchange next year, according to Bloomberg Intelligence’s Julie Chariell. “Fees are more likely to mirror retail than institutional crypto-trading commissions,” she wrote in a report. “NFT trading at our 3% fee estimate would bring much more revenue per trading dollar, along with less volatility to Coinbase operations than the crypto trading platform.”

Following Coinbase’s announcement, BTIG analyst Mark Palmer gave the company a “Buy” rating, as he sees the NFT platform “offering promise of new, higher-margin revenue stream” as part of its “accelerating diversification effort,” according to Seeking Alpha.

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The BTIG analyst estimates the new platform could add $137.5 million to Coinbase’s revenue, or about 2% of Palmer’s full-year 2021 revenue estimate, Seeking Alpha reported.

Coinbase’s stock was up 4.4% this morning.

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Last updated: October 14, 2021

About the Author

Yaël Bizouati-Kennedy is a former full-time financial journalist and has written for several publications, including Dow Jones, The Financial Times Group, Bloomberg and Business Insider. She also worked as a vice president/senior content writer for major NYC-based financial companies, including New York Life and MSCI. Yaël is now freelancing and most recently, she co-authored  the book “Blockchain for Medical Research: Accelerating Trust in Healthcare,” with Dr. Sean Manion. (CRC Press, April 2020) She holds two master’s degrees, including one in Journalism from New York University and one in Russian Studies from Université Toulouse-Jean Jaurès, France.