MEET NIGERIA'S TOP 10 YOUNG MILLIONAIRES THROUGH NFTs

Meet Nigerian Youths That Have Made Millions through NFTs

Whethere you accept it or not NFTs have come to stay. And several young Nigerians are cashing out as some of them have gone ahead to make some cool millions selling NFTs on various marketplaces. You too can join other young Nigerians in making millions from NFTs. But the first step will have to do with you accepting that it is possible.

So if you wish to join the list of young Nigerians making millions from NFTs you need to read this post and see what you can learn from them.

What is NFTs

Non-fungible tokens, otherwise known as NFTs, are pieces of digital content linked to the blockchain, a digital database for cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and ethereum.

While cryptocurrencies are fungible, which means they can be replaced and exchanged for the same unit in value, for example like trading one bitcoin for another — NFTs cannot be mutually interchanged. And no two NFTs are the same anywhere in the world. This is one of the things that gives them scarcity of value.

To understand how NFTs work, you will need a basic understanding of blockchain. And blockchain technology operates as a ledger that makes digital transactions visible and accessible to the public. Through secure encryption, this information is grouped into blocks. And each block comprises a timestamp and transaction data.

Currently, Nigeria is the 6th largest adopter of NFTs, according to a survey by Finder. That report also hints that NFT adoption will soon rise to 35.4% in Nigeria.

Today we want to take a look at some young Nigerians who have made millions from NFTs and how you too can.

Nigerians that have made millions from NFTs

1.Prince Jacon Osinachi Igwe

He is popularly known as Osinachi. But he is not just one of the Nigerians who have made millions from NFTs, he is actually the poster boy of Africa’s NFT community. He is probably the most bankable digital artist Nigeria currently has. The 31 year old Osinachi is a former librarian with University of Nigeria Nsukka. But today he command up to five figures in dollars for his NFT works.

How Osinachi Started

But it is important to note that Osinachi’s success in the digital art space didn’t happen overnight. He was born and raised in Aba, Abia State Nigeria. At an early age, the self-taught artist took an interest in computers which led him to Microsoft Word, a software application which he has mastered over time and sticks with to this day. In 2005 he was experimenting with the design of the famous NTA logo.

Osinachi is one of the young Nigerians to have made millions from NFTs
Osinachi is one of the young Nigerians to have made millions from NFTs

And he later ventured fully into digital arts and his first digital art was created in 2017.

In 2018, Osinachi became the first Nigerian to showcase his work at New York’s Ethereal blockchain summit. And he was a finalist for the Bridgeman Studio Award the following year. His pre-pandemic grasping of NFT minting knowledge afforded him a leverage to sell his artwork in the cryptosphere. In the midst of physical galleries closing business due to COVID-19, Osinachi began to negotiate transactions on SuperRare. “Mirror Mirror” and “Am I Pretty?” are just some of the pieces sold there, going for 9ETH ($38, 437) and 13.2ETH ($56,375) respectively. In fact Osinachi made serious headline in 2021 for selling $75,000 worth of NFTs in 10 days.

More strides

Osincahi contine to score many firsts in Africa and Nigeria as long as the world of digital art is concerned. It is on record that he became the first African artist to show a NFT series at Christie’s, a foremost auction house in London.

According to Osinachi, crypto has changed his life as he now has gained massive exposure and makes more money from art sales than he could ever do at his past job as a librarian. “A single NFT sale can translate to my one-year salary when I was working at the University of Nigeria,” he shared. “Part of the excitement for me was that I could put my work in a place where many people would see it aside from Instagram.”

2. Owo Anietie

Owo Anietie is the second name in the list of Nigerians who has made millions from NFTs. Anietie who was born and brought up in Akwa Ibom State is a 3D artist.

Narrating about his NFTs journey he said;

“It’s been crazy. Filled with ups and downs. One of the few disadvantages of being a first mover is you get to make mistakes and there are no blueprints for you to see what other people have done. Anyone in the NFT space you ask and anyone who tells you they know what they are doing is probably lying. We are all in this space figuring out the technology and trying to understand what it is and stands for. Personally, I wanted to make sure I created an environment where I can encourage more artists to join the space not just for the money. The money is good, life-changing and everything but look at the technology. Being able to live in an economy where decentralization is possible and power doesn’t have to rest in the hands of one person is ultimate.

How Owo Anietie started

Owo is the creator of Afrodroids. Afrodroids is a 12k PFP project in the NFT space that tells a story of human existence through the African lens. Drawing inspiration from everyday people, culture and history, his work is a blend of 3D, motion design and traditional paintings, mostly landscape.

The fact that Owo contributes around 20 percent of his proceeds from NFTs to Dream Catchers academy and that amounted to well over $100,000 within 2021 alone is a testimony that he is one of the biggest boys in the NFT space in Nigeria if not in Africa.

3. Anthony Azekwoh

Another example in the list of young Nigerians who have made millions from NFTs. Anthony is a 22 year old  Lagos based digital artist and author.

How he started

Anthony first took an interest in writing at 13. And art at 16, initially drawing with ink pens on paper before moving to Adobe Photoshop. Entirely self-taught, what his work lacks in technical skill, it certainly supplements with heart. His distinctive art style creates captivating mystical worlds where his characters are brought to life. He is a former Chemical Engineering student of Covenant University Ota. But he couldn’t graduate as he was kicked out for writing a scathing article about the school

But in 2021 alone, Anthony made over $40,000 from his NFTs. The Red Man alone sold for $25,419

Anthony Ezekwoh is a Nigerian and makes millions from NFTs
Anthony Ezekwoh is a Nigerian and makes millions from NFTs – one of his works

From his revenue in NFTs Anthony decided to use a portion help young, emerging artists. And so far up to 10 artists have benefited from that.

4. Odion Tobi

As a teenager, Odion would tinker around with Photoshop, acquiring rudimentary skills. In 2016, he won $500 from a design competition put together by African Voices. That feat made him the first African artist commissioned to create the company’s official second logo.

Tobi
One of Odion Tobi’s work – he has made good money from NFTs

Now 26, his strength lies in his deployment of 3D animation, illustration, branding, and motion graphics. Because his work heavily centers 3D, he uses software like Cinema 4D, Blender, Zbrush, Adobe Suites.

In his catalogue, he has touched on themes of love, technology and African cosmology and heritage. Some of his digital artworks were recently shown at the Coin Geek conference in New York City.

Odion shares his experience

In an interview with the guardian Odion says that NFT is the future for African artists.  NFT has been a bumpy ride and patience is key. I got to realize a lot of things about NFT and the craziness that comes with it. Actually, I find the journey insane and I enjoy the hype I am getting. I reached out to Leogami, owner of a huge NFT community on Instagram. He admired my work, posted it and soon I got followers and people started reaching out to work with me. I have been working on my personal projects. I have also earned a lot from collaborations and Avastars remix selected me as one of the artists they wanted to collaborate with.

Nigerians in the NFT space are doing amazing stuff. However, you are mistaken if you think you will join the NFT and make quick cash. It’s actually early for Nigerians and there are a few Nigerians doing NFT very well. Some people think it’s about quick money so they don’t do it the right way. You can literally count the heads that are doing NFT right now. The NFT space is exploding. Every day it’s going hard. I see Nigerians in the metaverse in future.

5. Oyindamola Oyekemi Oyewumi

25 year old Oyekemi is an admirable lady by all standards. She recently joined the league of young Nigerians who have seen millions  from NFTs.

How She Started

Oyindamola Oyekemi Oyewumi is a graduate of Ladoke Akintola University where she bagged a B.Tech in Pure and Applied Chemistry. She completed NYSC in February, 2021.

Oyekemi has joined young Nigerians who have made millions from NFTs
Oyekemi has joined young Nigerians who have made millions from NFTs

Oyindamola delved into ballpoint pen drawing professionally in 2018. But she has been drawn to this artistic medium at a much younger age. Her Instagram handle contains a grid layout of Marilyn Monroe, drawn by herself. With the NFT wave here to stay, Oyindamola represents a promising stake for Nigerian female artists in this new technology. I think Nigeria should be proud of her. And Nigerian ladies should learn from her.

Oyekemi work sold for over 6,000 dollars
Oyekemi work sold for over 6,000 dollars

Creating portraits using ballpoint pens, Oyindamola found herself in the NFT world when she tweeted her drawing of Ethereum co-founder Charles Hoskinson just one month after her youth service. Hoskinson noticed the tweet and helped her put it up for sale. At the end of the month, it was sold for $6,300. Since then, Oyindamola has been attempting to cultivate a NFT footprint by minting other works on Mintable. The artist has been honing her skills since completing National Service, churning monotone and coloured artworks that often depict women and children.

6. Niyi Okeowo

Next on our list of Nigerians who have made millions from NFTs is  Niyi Okeowo.

Niyi is a multidisciplinary art director: a photographer, a graphic designer, 3D artist and a motion artist. Niyi riding on the NFT wave only appears as a natural progression seeing where he is coming from.

How Niyi Started

He started his professional art career in 2014 with graphic design. After that he progressed gradually into photography by taking up internship with some photographers. According to him, at that point he was just going into their studios and watching them shoot. And by 2018 he went into 3D design. And recently he has been into 3D animations and Augmented Reality.

Niyi is a graduate of Mass Communication from Covenant University Ota.

Niyi and NFT Journey

In February 2021, after Daft Punk, the French music duo, announced their split, Niyi created a digital painting of the group and posted it on his Twitter page. That painting was later sold for 1 ETH (~$1,900) – on Rarible.

Later in 2021 Niyi was also one of the artists that exhibited at Art X’s NFT exhibition project titled, Reloading…in Lagos. And after that exhibition he sold his art—“Indigo Child”—for 1.2ETH ($4,140), on the popular NFT marketplace, SuperRare.

Niyi Okeowo’s “Indigo Child” pushed him to join young Nigerians who have made millions from NFTs
Niyi Okeowo’s “Indigo Child” pushed him to join young Nigerians who have made millions from NFTs

Okeowo has also made good money from some other works including one that sold for 1.5ETH—about $6,500. But instead of creating individual NFT artworks, he wants to create long-term projects also known as collectibles.

7. Adisa Olashile

Adisa Olashile, is an NYSC member serving in Ondo State. On April 1, 2022 he took to his twitter handle to share the story of how he captured portraits of an elderly drummer named Baba Onilu and gave him half of the money he made after selling them for about One million naira as NFT.

It turns out Adisa saw the man with his musical instrument at the local government secretariat where the youth corps meets for their weekly CDS. One day, he decided to make the man’s day by taking a picture of him.

Adisa Olashile
Adisa Olashile

As a smart art creator few days later, Adisa minted the whole video of their meeting as an NFT and sold it for 1.1ETH (N2,056,284.99). Adisa revealed that the sale was a big win.

Adisa joined the league of young Nigerians who made millions from NFTs after minting the video of his meeting with Baba
Adisa joined the league of young Nigerians who made millions from NFTs after minting the video of his meeting with Baba

8. Adewunmi Rasaq Babatunde

Another talented Nigerian photographer Adewunmi Rasaq Babatunde few days ago came close to hitting his own millions from NFTs. Precisely he went home with the sum of N740,000 after making his first sale on OpenSea.

According to Rasaq it didn’t come easy as it took him 3 months of hard work and consistency to make that first sale.

Adewunmi Rasaq NFT
Adewunmi NFT

9. Uzodinma Maryjane Akunna

Uzodinma MaryJane Akunna is a multidisciplinary Visual Artist and Illustrator. She loves being dynamic in her Visual works, illustrations and designs.She is quite beautiful but creates even more beautiful works that capture the aesthetics of Black and African culture. Maryjane loves the use of colors in her work because it helps to convey the emotions she wants people to feel. She loves nature and the beauty of African culture. Being Black and African is something she is proud of. MaryJane is highly inspired by people and her African heritage. She is based in Lagos, Nigeria. And guess what? Maryjane is still just a teenager.

How Maryjane started

Akunna Maryjane
Akunna Maryjane

I discovered NFT in 2021 through a friend and after researching it, I met fellow Nigerians who put me through the process and joined communities in the NFT space. I eventually decided to get into the NFT space and took a loan of close to $300 from Shecluded, a finance company that helps fund women’s entrepreneurship journey to pay for OpenSea one-time gas fee.

Maryjane launched her first collection Genesis, which talked about black African females in unique ways and it got sold out in less than 2 days. A lot of people loved and connected with my works and most of the collectors were from Nigeria. Next, I posted sneak peeks of my second collection called Her crown on my Twitter which highlighted black African womens’ hair. It gained traction on social media before I officially put it out on OpenSea. The same night I dropped my collection which was about 43 items, Twitter purchased one of my works and immediately after, people rushed in to buy more and in a few hours, it got sold out.

Maryjane’s observation

The Nigerians I have seen so far in the NFT space are actually amazing. I have not seen Nigerians exhibit such patience in any activity before. The kind of patience, learning curve and value they bring into the NFT space is incredible and It brings me joy that we can actually be this way and have this opportunity in the NFT space. It is fun and beautiful.

Nigerians in the NFT space are working hard, they are patient and they keep sharing their work. It is a hustle for us, some have quit their job to join the NFT space. It might be a rushed decision for people who left their job. I think Nigerians in the NFT space should think first before they act and exercise patience too. It’s not a fast way to make money and people are actually paying for our work. We should not act in a way that conforms to the stereotype and I believe with time, it’s going to be better.

10. Tobi Johnson

Tobi is a 2D graphic illustrator and NFT artiste based in Lagos, Nigeria, who started as a graphic designer, creating art covers for remarkable Nigerian artists like Zinoleesky, Oxlade and Ice Prince before transitioning into the NFT space. He draws huge inspiration from personal experiences, music and video games. He enjoys playing and experimenting with colours and shapes in order to cause a trippy effect.

According to him, NFT experience has been life-changing, interesting and filled with lessons. People think NFT is easy and glamorous which is not the case. I participated in the NFT space hastily and took a different route after reality hit me.

He further stated that Nigerians in the NFT space are pushing boundaries. ‘A lot of people didn’t know there were these talents in Nigeria, especially because of the stereotypes. The Nigerians in the NFT space are amazing, talented and straightforward. The NFT space is like an escape for us.A few Nigerians have been featured on the home pages of OpenSea just to tell you how far we have gone in the space for us to be recognized on the home page. It is huge for Nigerians and it is amazing to see’.

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