NFT Marketplace Blur Dethroned OpenSea as NFT Trading Volume Spiked 68% in Q1: Report

Ethereum-based non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace Blur dethroned OpenSea as the leading NFT platform in Q1 2023, as the trading volume for digital collectibles surged by 68%, according to a new report by crypto data platform CoinGecko.

OpenSea Loses its Top Position as NFT Trading Volume Surges

As per the report dubbed “2023 Q1 Crypto Industry Report,” a majority of the NFT trading volume for the first quarter came from Blur, a new marketplace launched in October. Blur’s market share grew from 52.8% in December to 71.8% in March, and OpenSea’s fell from 29.3% to 21.7% within the same period.

While Blur found its way to the leading position of the top six NFT marketplaces in Q1, the trading volume for digital collectibles rose by 68% to $4.5 billion from $2.1 billion in Q4 2022. 

Although many chains recorded an uptick in trading volume for the first quarter, the ecosystem of the proof-of-stake (PoS) blockchain platform, Solana, shrunk. The trading volume of Magic Eden, Solana’s largest marketplace, plunged by 67.9% from $73.9 million in December to $23.6 million in March. The migration of y00ts and DeGods – two popular NFT collections – to other chains worsened the fall.

Besides the NFT space, the decentralized finance (DeFi) sector also saw a significant uptrend. DeFi market cap surged by 65.2% in Q1, accounting for $29.6 billion in gains majorly spurred by liquid staking governance token performance.

Crypto Market Gains $406B in Q1

The outstanding performance of liquid staking governance tokens stemmed from the buzz around Ethereum’s Shanghai upgrade. Upon confirmation of the Shapella upgrade, the market cap of the governance tokens recorded a 210.9% increase. After outperforming lending protocols, liquid staking governance is currently the third-largest category in DeFi.

Notably, the growth of decentralized exchanges (DEXs) outpaced that of centralized exchanges (CEXs) twice due to regulators’ global crackdown on the latter. While CEXs grew by 16.9% in Q1, DEXs saw 33.4% growth within the same period.

Meanwhile, the general crypto market finished Q1 with a market cap of $1.2 trillion, a 48.9% increase from the previous quarter. The market rounded 2022 off with a market cap of $829 billion and gained $406 billion in the last three months.