Cryptocurrency Firms Expand Physical Footprint in New York

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Still, when Okada first offered the NFT, it was valued at about $12,000; it’s now worth half that.

While his company seeks tenants for the building, it is also putting the property up for sale as an NFT — essentially a ticket to acquire the deed.

Houses have been sold this way, but Mr. Okada, who is offering his building on OpenSea for $29.5 million or 15,105 Ether, the cryptocurrency that can be used to purchase the NFT, said he believed this was the first time a commercial building in New York had gone the same route.

Whether this is the wave of the future or a marketing gimmick remains to be seen, insiders say.

Solana, which took a 10-year lease at 141 East Houston, does not intend to fill up its new office with desk space for employees — the company does not require daily appearances. Instead, it plans to build out the space for meetings and boot camps, known as hacker houses.

Solana also plans to occupy a floor at EmpireDAO, the new web3 co-working operation, at 190 Bowery, a six-story former bank with landmark status that was the longtime home of the photographer Jay Maisel. Solana is taking the floor meant for TerraUSD, a stablecoin that imploded this month.

EmpireDAO is envisioned as a sort of maker space for the web3 community. Its management system will be based on cryptocurrency, said Mike Fraietta, EmpireDAO’s founder, but its landlord, RFR, requires rent payments the old-fashioned way.

“Our lenders require U.S. dollars, we’re making our mortgage payments in U.S. dollars, and that means our rents have to come in U.S. dollars,” said AJ Camhi, director of leasing at RFR Realty.