- An IIT Bombay graduate, Toshendra Sharma, has launched a new platform for non-fungible tokens called NFTically.
- Sharma wants everyone to be able to set up their own NFT marketplaces, but claims his product is not in competition with WazirX or ZebPay.
- NFTically charges lower fees to artists creating their own marketplace, does not push on KYC and claims to be immune to any new crypto regulation in India.
Toshendra Sharma, an Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) alumnus, wants to democratise the market for non-fungible tokens (NFTs).
Rather than have artists list their creations on someone else’s marketplace, Sharma’s new NFT platform — NFTically — lets artists set up their own shop, which also comes with lower fees when making a sale. And, the new NFT platform launched on July 20, is backed with seed funding from Polygon Matic’s CEO, Jayanti Kanani.
|Marketplaces on NFTically||Fee|
|Artwork sold on artist’s marketplace||1.5%|
|Artwork sold on NFTically marketplace||2.5%|
Sharma maintains that despite NFTically’s proposal, it’s not trying to compete with WazirX — India’s largest crypto exchange, which just launched its own NFT platform just one month ago.
WazirX wants remain exclusive — NFTically is calling in the masses
Unlike WazirX, which only allows a few ‘exclusive’ members to launch NFTs on its new platform, NFTically’s primary goal is to pump up volume and transactions. “We are focusing on adoption and use cases through the customer’s own marketplace,” said Sharma.
This is why not only does the new NFT platform allow the minting of new NFTs but also allows users to set up their own NFT marketplaces as well. The process doesn’t require any substantial investment or cost — aside from the minimum amount of cryptocurrency a person should ideally have in their crypto wallet before signing up.
This means anyone from a YouTuber to a TikToker to a journalist can list their digital products to be sold online without having to compromise on the intellectual property rights. NFT rights, or digital rights, are a category of ownership of their own and don’t have anything to do with how the original artist wants to sell their work offline.
NFTically is keeping the barriers to entry low
With NFTically, there is no Know-Your-Customer (KYC) obligation either. But, users will be flagged for suspicious activity like publishing someone else’s copyrighted material or having a wallet address that’s been flagged for illicit activities.
“There is no KYC needed because that’s how the Ethereum blockchain system works,” Sharma told Business Insider. “If we find anything suspicious, or something wrong, we may ask you for the KYC. For now, we’re keeping it open.”
NFTically is available to users all over the world except for those flagged by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) for money laundering — countries like North Korea or Iran.
Regulations won’t affect NFTically, because it’s not dealing with banks
Also, unlike WazirX, NFTically claims that it won’t be affected by any changes in regulation by the Indian government or the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) because it’s not converting an Indian currency into cryptocurrency.
The new NFT platform allows NFTs to be minted on either Polygon, Ethereum or the Binance Finance Coin. Those looking to make a purchase, but don’t own any cryptocurrency, can do so with their VISA or Mastercard. Even these transactions are not handled by banks, but by external entities.
WazirX was already locking horns with the government over currency conversion and, more recently, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has been sniffing around with accusations of money laundering.
What is an NFT?
NFTs are the latest trend in blockchain. Unlike cryptocurrencies, no two NFTs are identical. Simply put, you can’t exchange them and put one in place of another. And, their value comes from how rare they are — akin to collectibles or the art world.
In India, Sharma isn’t the only one, nor is he the first, to see the potential of the NFT market. WazirX’s NFT platform, launched just one month ago, lets users post NFTs but the selection process, at least for now, is rigorous and not just anyone can sign up.
ZebPay, on the other hand, has launched its own NFTs called Dazzle. According to the company, each Dazzle token will have unique properties and will also dole out rewards to the user — like lower fees on the ZebPay exchange or discounts on partner platforms. The NFTs will gain new powers over time, and give the owner more membership benefits. At some point, it will also be possible to generalize new tokens from pairs of existing ones.
In India, the NFT culture has only just come in. According to Sharma, the Asian nation has the potential to be the frontrunner in the whole space. “Once it’s picked up, it won’t take time to beat the West in volume and transaction amounts,” he said.
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