The founder of news site TechCrunch is using an NFT auction to sell an apartment

  • TechCrunch founder Michael Arrington is selling an apartment via an NFT auction.
  • Propy, a blockchain-based real estate platform, is running the auction with bidding starting at $20,000.
  • The winner of the NFT will also win the property rights to the studio apartment in Kiev.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

TechCrunch founder and crypto investor Michael Arrington is selling an apartment in Ukraine through an NFT in a transaction being billed as the world’s first real estate sale via a non-fungible token.

Propy, a blockchain-based real estate platform, is running an auction for the studio apartment as a real estate-backed NFT and bidding starts at $20,000. The apartment was purchased in 2017 by Arrington, founder of online publisher TechCrunch, through Propy.

NFTs are digital assets such as video, images or audio that are tied to a blockchain. The assets can usually be viewed online but just one person can own them and the market for such collectibles has boomed recently.

The apartment is located in the Svyatoshino neighborhood in Kiev. Following the auction, the winner will become the owner of the NFT and the property itself. If the NFT is resold, the property rights are attached. Bidding begins June 8.

“Real estate is the world’s largest asset class and the most significant financial investment for most families. The intersection [between] Humanity and Big Capital is key to changing the old industry,” wrote Natalia Karayaneva, the CEO of Propy, in a Tuesday post on Twitter.

Arrington bought the apartment for $60,000 and the residential property transaction was recorded on the Ethereum blockchain network and settled using smart contracts. Michael Arrington served as an advisor to Propy, according to a 2017 press release announcing Arrington’s purchase of the Kiev apartment.

Propy’s Karayaneva, a software engineer and former real estate developer, is an advisor to Arrington XRP Capital, a hedge fund denominated in XRP, the digital asset used in Ripple Labs’ payment network.

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