- eToro launched an NFT fund in Miami on Thursday, as part of an initiative to support digital arts.
- The $20 million fund will buy non-fungible tokens to help artists and musicians.
- Brands have flooded into NFTs and eToro wants to improve how digital art is valued as the sector matures.
eToro announced a $20 million fund to buy, support and fund NFTs and their creators in Miami on Thursday as the bitcoin conference took over the city.
"As one of the first companies to offer crypto alongside more traditional assets, it is only natural for eToro to serve as the bridge to bring new users into NFTs and the metaverse. We're incredibly excited to see the developments in this space over the coming months," Yoni Assia, co-founder and chief executive of eToro, said.
This announcement comes a week after Delta, an investment portfolio tracker company which eToro purchased in 2019, added NFTs to its platform. The fund is part of a new initiative from eToro, called eToro.art, which will support NFT creators and brands.
eToro.art allows creators to fill in a form to apply to partner with the investing platform's new initiative, as it looks to discover and support digital artists. The site also showcases eToro's NFT collection, which a portions of the fund will go towards, including pieces from Bored Ape Yacht Club, CryptoPunks, World of Women and more.
Assia has a Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT as his profile picture on Twitter, as well as appearing to have purchased the ENS domain name YoniAssia.eth – the hallmark signs of a crypto native in 2022.
Guy Hirsch, Managing Director, Global NFTs at eToro spoke with Insider this week about the potential of digital art and why it's time to consider NFTs as part of your investment strategy.
Hirsch went on to tell Insider that even investors who are on the fence about investing in NFTs may end up owning basketball or football NFTs as digital collectibles, which he sees as replacing physical collectibles – NBA were one of the first sports brands to explore NFTs with NBA Top Shots.
Without noticing, you might just end up owning an NFT because of your affinity to a certain brand, he said.
"NFTs converge culture, technology, and investing. As the leading social investing platform, eToro is well positioned to lead this space, and eToro.art will bring creators and investors together through technology, uniting communities around art," Hirsch said.
Part of the trading platform's goals includes improving how digital art is valued, Hirsch spoke with CNBC about the launch and how digital art is currently being valued.
"We see new services emerging that will be akin to the appraisal process of traditional art. Within a year or two we'll have third-party services that will appraise individual pieces and give you an approximate price on what you're about to buy or what you own in a way that would be agreed on by market participants," he said.
According to the eToro website, the company first offered bitcoin trading in 2013, before adding more crypto assets to its platform in 2017. Data on eToro's website shows bitcoin now has almost 22 million followers on the platform, out of a total 27 million users, with more than 32% of those followers investing in bitcoin.