Nigerian NFT Artists Are Making Their Global Mark in $200 Billion Market

By Jonathan Ntege Lubwama

  • Nigeria boasts Africa’s biggest NFT scene with the global market expected to reach $211.72B by 2030
  • Saro-Wiwa’s NFTs have been particularly popular, with one piece fetching over $200K at auction

The non-fungible token (NFT) market is on the rise and Nigerian artistes are taking advantage of this trend by selling their digital art. Nigerian artistes have been quick to tap into this lucrative market, and the country now boasts the largest NFT scene in Africa’s art on the blockchain ecosystem. Grand View Research found that the global NFT market size is expected to reach $211.7 billion by 2030 and one reason for the growth is the increasing popularity of blockchain technology. 

Why This Matters: Many Nigerian artists are using platforms like OpenSea, Rarible, and SuperRare to sell their digital art as NFTs. These companies provide a way for artists to showcase their work and reach a wider audience. This blockchain technology allows for the creation of unique digital assets including anything from artwork and collectibles to virtual real estate and in-game items, that can be bought and sold online..

Nigerian artists who have sold NFTs include Damola Adepoju and Zina Saro-Wiwa, both of whom have made headlines with their blockchain-based artwork. Saro-Wiwa’s NFTs have been particularly popular, with one piece fetching over $200,000 at auction. Another artist is Victor Ehikhamenor, whose NFTs have fetched over $100,000 at auction. Ehikhamenor is known for his vibrant, African-inspired artworks, which have been exhibited around the world. The success of these artists is a testament to the growing appetite for NFTs in Nigeria, and the country’s vibrant art scene. 

What’s Next: The future of the NFT market in Nigeria could be impacted by the government’s recent reversal on its ban on cryptocurrencies. Back in 2017, the Central Bank of Nigeria banned the use of cryptocurrencies, citing concerns about money laundering and terrorism financing. However, in a recent statement, the bank indicated that it was considering lifting the cryptocurrency ban in order to encourage innovation and development in the fintech sector. With the ban lifted, more people will be able to buy and sell NFTs, potentially increasing the demand for digital art from Nigerian artists.

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