The core developers of OpenBazaar released the first version of their peer-to-peer marketplace.
Project leader Brian Hoffman stated:
“Trade was meant to be free. This idea inspired us to spend the last two years building OpenBazaar. Starting today, anyone in the world with access to an Internet connection can use Bitcoin and OpenBazaar to exchange goods and services freely. We can’t wait to see how people will use this tool.”
OpenBazaar is a peer-to-peer marketplace where buyers and sellers engage in trade directly with each other. As there are no middleman in the trade, users don’t pay any fees to use the network, and there are no terms and conditions to sign. OpenBazaar is permissionless trade. There are also no central authorities that act as gatekeepers and restrict trade.
OpenBazaar launched a test version of their software at the beginning of March, achieving more than 25,000 downloads from 126 countries. Users posted more than 3,000 listings to test out the software in preparation for the public release.
In 2015, the OpenBazaar core-developers received funding from Union Square Ventures, Andreessen-Horowitz, and angel investor William Mougayar to form a company, enabling full-time development of the protocol and software. The company, named ‘OB1’, says it will continue releasing improved versions of the software over the coming months, and will begin offering services to users on the network.