Reports said that South Korea’s nonfungible token (NFT) space has rapidly expanded throughout 2021 led by the growth of crypto and NFT services offered by Kakao, but competitors are entering the fray.
It has been reported that the NFT market in South Korea could be on a path for even more expansion after the November 5 government ruling that NFT purchases will not incur taxes. Klaytn, the blockchain developed by Korean tech startups Kakao and GroundX, is the obvious first choice for Koreans searching for a network to buy and sell NFTs.
However, Klaytn’s market dominance in Korea is unrivaled as KakaoTalk, Kakao’s flagship products suite, has over 52 million active users and integrates Klaytn’s Klip crypto wallet directly into its mobile app.
Sangdi, the CEO of Spoon, an NFT creator platform based in South Korea, said:
“If KakaoTalk pushes them, ordinary people who have not encountered cryptos will become familiar with them and [they will] accept NFTs as a culture.”
The report said that Kakao’s own Krafterspace NFT minting service has posted over 37,000 NFTs for sale on OpenSea, and almost 7,000 of them have already been purchased. Korean NFT creators are aware that the platform on Klaytn has been tailor-made for Korean collectors, its target market.
“We are aiming for the Korean market first, then the global market. I think currently Klaytn will help us focus on Korea.”
Likewise, Polygon is the second of three networks supported by OpenSea, making it a relatively familiar platform for Korean NFT collectors. It also supports a robust NFT market that some Korean projects find more suitable for their global business model.
Korean NFT enthusiast Karl Hyun also feels that Polygon is better suited for the NFT market than Klaytn. Although his favorite collections are not based in South Korea, he feels that Ethereum-based layer-two solutions are best to help increase the global reach of NFTs.
Thus, Kakao’s involvement in the blockchain space also extends into VC investing, and it has a long-standing partnership with Dunamu, the owner of the Korean Upbit exchange.