George Glover Dec 28 2021 - A music producer who helped found the Glastonbury festival is entering the NFT market to support 1 billion children in poverty. He explains his $100 million per year campaign to harness blockchain for social good.
Tony Hollingsworth can remember the moment he decided to launch Listen, a campaign that aims to help 1 billion vulnerable children across the world.
Having helped to found Glastonbury and organise the influential concert that celebrated Nelson Mandela's 70th birthday, the producer was enjoying a well-earned first retirement.
"I was listening to a radio program where they were interviewing a mother in Africa whose baby had just died of diarrhea," he told Insider. "The rehydration sachet would cost just 10 cents, they didn't have it and the baby died."
"My baby was on my shoulder, and if he coughed the wrong way, I could have called a doctor," he added. "It just seemed to me to be such an obvious inequity that I should really look at that area, helping vulnerable and disadvantaged children, much harder."
That led him to found the Listen campaign, which will expand into auctioning non-fungible tokens for charity this year. Listen helps to support 1 billion underprivileged children worldwide by funding more specialized charities.
Non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, are cryptographic assets with a unique blockchain code. They have surged in popularity this year, and according to the major marketplace OpenSea, the overall NFT market is worth $2.5 billion.
Many artists and musicians have developed NFTs in 2021, with Banksy selling an original digital artwork for $380,000 worth of ether in March and Katy Perry announcing an exclusive partnership with the blockchain start-up Theta Labs in July. Investors have piled into the NFT craze, with over $102 million spent on NFTs in a single day in early May.
Hollingsworth has enlisted over 200 artists from the film and music industries to create NFTs, which will be auctioned in 2022 to raise money for the Listen campaign. Samuel L. Jackson, Natalie Portman, Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn have all backed the campaign.