The unheralded woman who closed Polygon’s deals with Starbucks, Disney, and Mastercard is now a VP at OpenSea

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In 2022 and early 2023, Polygon Labs closed deal after deal with big brand names like Starbucks, Disney, Mastercard, Reddit, and Salesforce. The blockchain developer’s dealmaking streak was so prodigious that some on Crypto Twitter (now Crypto X?) called its business development team “chads,” online slang for alpha males.

Yet, what many didn’t realize was that the two vice presidents—Jennifer Booze and Kelly DiGregorio—who led the majority of Polygon Labs’s blockbuster deals were women. And now, DiGregorio is set to become a dealmaker at another high-profile Web3 outfit: OpenSea.

Polygon BD team are absolute giga chads. It’s great to see the work and results they put out every month.

— Ninjasurprise.eth (@Ninjasurprise_) November 3, 2022

On Tuesday, she and OpenSea, one of the largest marketplaces for non-fungible tokens, announced that she would become one of its handful of vice presidents and lead OpenSea’s global content partnerships. Her new position is an expanded role from her previous gig at Polygon Labs, where she was only in charge of entertainment and consumer business partnerships. (There were also gaming and large enterprise leads.)

“Partnerships have been a focus of ours for some time,” Shiva Rajaraman, OpenSea’s chief business officer, said in a statement to Fortune. However, he and the rest of the company are excited by DiGregorio’s experience and what her prior successes “mean for OpenSea and the broader ecosystem.”

The hiring of DiGregorio follows a period of turbulent waters for OpenSea, which, in addition to contending with a large downturn in the NFT market, is facing fierce competition from rival Blur. Her appointment is also comparatively rare in an industry where only 7% of Web3 founders are women, and 27% of all employees at the top companies aren’t men, according to a study released in February by the Boston Consulting Group. The majority of OpenSea’s vice presidents are women, a company spokesperson told Fortune.

“Women have visibility within the inner industry circles,” DiGregorio told Fortune. “But more broadly, when it comes to these platforms, communities, there isn’t an awareness of who’s working on what, and there are incredible women working in the space.”

DiGregorio started her almost-two-decade-long career when she worked at Time Warner, where she reviewed and greenlit the finances of various movies, TV shows, and other content. After stints at YouTube and FoxNext, which Disney acquired as part of its deal for 21st Century Fox in 2019, she worked at Dapper Labs, whose partnerships with brand name sports leagues like the NBA and NFL attracted a slew of headlines.

In 2022, she jumped over to Polygon Labs, where she landed more headline-grabbing deals. “It does support the adoption of the technology overall, going more mainstream,” she told Fortune, in regards to why Web3 companies are so interested in linking arms with corporate brands.

OpenSea, which has partnered with big-name companies such as Warner Music and Christie’s, is no stranger to the corporate world, but Rajaraman, the company’s chief business officer, hopes the hire of DiGregorio can help “evolve the use cases for NFT technology and welcome more brands—and by extension, consumers—into Web3.”

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