With the fuel startup, four founders from Berlin want to make it easier for artists and their fans to access the NFT market. Popular investors think this is great.
They want to buy and create an NFT to be easier. The Berlin-based fuel company is targeting artists in particular. Csongor Barabasi, Thanh Binh Tran, Stefan Tietze and Patrice Deckert are building something like “Shopify for NFTs”.
With NFTs so important right now, it’s no surprise that the company found a notable group of investors in its preliminary round: founders and business angels Lea-Sophie Cramer and Verena Pausder are involved, as well as Bitstamp-CTO David Osognik and Indeed founder Paul Forster. Additionally, several venture investors have reached out, such as New York-based FintechCollective (among others, a shareholder in Opensea, the largest virtual marketplace and trading venue for NFTs to date), and London-based venture capital fund Seedcamp (investor in Sorare, Hopin, and Revolut). and Notion Capital with its pioneers of turnkey vehicles. A total of 1.5 million euros was raised in this way.
In an extension of this tour, the company announced a few weeks later that rappers Cro and Bausa and his record label Two Sides are also investing in Fuel. With the new investors, the startup will not only secure additional funds, but also secure direct access to the music and entertainment scene, according to an official statement. “I’ve been researching the NFT area for a long time and I’m convinced of the potential, not only for the music industry but also for other areas of the creator economy,” rapper investor Crowe was quoted as saying.
NFT stands for Non-Fungible Token. It is a kind of digital certificate of authenticity that makes original digital artwork unique. Yes, there can be thousands of copies of a digital photo, for example, anyone can copy and paste the photo into their Twitter profile – but only one photo has the digital code of the original photo. The principle also works with music files, so there can be only one original copy of the recording.
NFT Market: Huge Growth Potential
A good year ago, the theme really got the analog art market somewhat stagnant. Suddenly it became possible to categorize original artworks by an increasing number of well-known artists as such and sell them at affordable prices.
According to industry media Dappradar, $23 billion worth of NFTs circulated worldwide in 2021. In 2020 it was still $95 million. Top artists like Damien Hirst in the arts or Steve Aoki in the music industry are involved in the NFT world. Sotheby’s auction house has already found its way to trade in digital art as NFTs.
To make it easier for artists to display their artwork for sale as NFTs, the four Berliners from Fuel have launched a platform that allows creators to create, manage, and scale their NFTs using a wide range of tools.
Fayol is already working with Tomorrowland DJs Mat.Joe, according to an official funding statement. What exactly this collaboration looks like, what further plans the startup is pursuing and how the founders are evaluating the German NFT market, did not want to comment yet on a request from Gründerszene.
This article was originally published on March 30, 2022 and has been updated to include funding from rappers Cro and Bausa.