Venture Trotter Weekly Review: Week Ending 1/20/23

Ruceto tracked over $215 million in institutional investments into crypto or web3 companies last week. Links to the target company website, investment announcement, and token info are provided via hyperlinks on the Target Name, $ Raised, and Token columns respectively.

Target Name $ Raised Lead Investors Description Token
Galaxy Digital, ConsenSys
Developer of an NFT ecosystem designed to enable fans to purchase, trade, and share officially licensed sports NFTs.
Building the social platforms leveraging AI and web3 where users can play, talk, battle, trade, and adventure together.
In-game NFTs
Polychain Capital
Enables L1s and L2s to generate zero-knowledge (ZK) proofs on demand
Bain Capital Crypto, Paradigm
Building hardware for zero knowledge proofs
Framework Ventures
Modular platform for secure digital asset custody, trading and management with secure and robust infrastructure
Pantera Capital, Archetype
Obol's goal is to advance the decentralization of Ethereum's validator ecosystem by building a sustainable protocol and ecosystem for distributed validators
Polygon, Animoca Brands, Magic Eden, Planetarium, Big Brain Holdings, Crit Ventures, JoyCity, Pearl Abyss, XL Games, Wemix, Global Coin Research
Web3 gaming platform
User generated content metaverse engine where everything built on Createra is tradeable
Seven Seven Six
Web3 fashion platform
Coinbase Ventures, Circle Ventures, and others
Provides traders with adaptable infrastructure that redefines access to global digital asset markets.
DWF Labs
An open sourced browser extension that brings privacy and benefits from Web3 to social media like Facebook & Twitter
Y Combinator
multichain web3 wallet
Reciprocal Ventures
Web3 credential management protocol
Polygon Ventures, Blizzard Avalanche Ecosystem Fund, Hashkey Capital, IDG Capital, NetDragon Websoft, and others
A free-to-play, play-and-earn, community-driven, Web3 virtual pet game based on the original Neopets classic
Blockchange Ventures, Circle Ventures, Earlybird, SIX Fintech Ventures
With the Obligate platform, companies can issue on-chain bonds and commercial paper to obtain funding from a diverse range of investors
A&T Capital
ETH staking with distributed validators
6th Man Ventures, Collab+Currency, Shima Capital, 1kx, DeFi Alliance, Sfermion, Emoote, LCA Game Guild
Sleep GameFi that rewards you every morning with a free digital collectible. You get 1 collectible every morning, 2 if you went to bed on time
Sleep rewards
dao5, Sequoia China Seed Fund
Middleware for fully decentralized infra, empowered by ZK
Discover, buy & sell land across the open metaverse
SevenX Ventures, Vision Plus Capital
AI driven sybil detection
Binance Labs, SNZ holding
A layer-3 cross-chain solution that helps Web3 projects to integrate data, computing, storage, CDN, and payment into one suite
Tribe Capital, Castle Island Ventures, Picus Capital and Global Founders Capital, and others
Providing loans against the combined alternative assets of individual investors
Commonwealth, FalconX, Arthur Hayes, Avalanche, ChapterOne, KuCoin, Gate, Betaworks, OP Crypto, Quantstamp and others
Bringing liquidity to the long tail of cryptoassets via the first decentralized, algorithmic market making protocol

Candy Digital partners with organizations like MLB and NASCAR to develop officially licensed NFTs. An SEC filing reveals that the company raised over $38M in an equity offering that opened on 1/3/23, around the time CNBC reported that Fanatics was selling its stake. In 2021, Candy Digital raised a $100M Series A at a $1.5B valuation.

Createra is a metaverse engine where anyone can create and distribute MetaFi games. Users buy land which allows them to become creators and distribute their NFT assets on the market where everything created can be traded and monetized. Games can be picked up very quickly on either a phone or computer with no download necessary.

Diva is an ETH liquid staking protocol powered by distributed validator technology. Users receive divETH in return for staking their ETH into a Distributed Validation (Diva) smart contract, which accrues staking rewards without the need to run any infrastructure. The value of 1 divETH will always equal the value of 1 ETH because divETH is fully backed by ETH.

Elixir is a protocol that enables projects to access liquidity and algorithmic market making for their centralized and decentralized exchange pairs with much greater cost savings than what is often available in current market making contracts. V1 of the protocol allows projects to create bonds where users receive LP tokens for contributing to a 50/50 pool (half the native token, half USDT/USDC), and swap those LP tokens for 100% of the native project token, plus a premium set by the project. Elixir uses this liquidity to algorithmically market make the CEX pair. The ELXR token is the sole governance token in the ecosystem.

Mask is a browser extension that brings the web3 decentralized application ecosystem to traditional social networks. While on webe2 mainstream social networks, users can still utilize secure, decentralized social messaging, payment networks, file storage, and file sharing. Launched in February 2021, the MASK token is the native token of MaskDAO and represents one vote in DAO-related events.

Neopets Metaverse is a 3D remake of the classic Neopets browser game. The remake will be free-to-play, in a decentralized world, and will offer opportunities for players to own and monetize in-game assets. Neopets Metaverse’s native token for the in-game economy and governance is NPM. NPM can be swapped for the in-game currency, CSM.

SYKY is a web3 fashion platform that will become an incubator, marketplace and social community for designers and consumers. The company was founded by Alice Delahunt, the former Chief Digital & Content Officer at Ralph Lauren and Digital & Social Marketing Director at Burberry. Purchasing a membership pass unlocks early access to limited editions and exclusive content, digital and IRL events, access to a network of designers and enthusiasts, and exclusive research and insights. The initial supply of membership passes is 987.

Institutional Investors of Crypto

Dealbox Ventures, a specialty consulting firm focused on capital markets strategy and technology, is planning to invest $125M into startups that use web3 tech. The investments will come from five new funds that are planned to be $25M each, and will cover emerging growth, real estate, fintech, social impact and consumer tech focusing on leisure.  

HashKey Capital, a global investor with about $1B in AUM, closed HashKey FinTech Investment Fund III at $500m. The fund will focus on infrastructures, toolings, and applications that have potential for mass adoption. Deng Chao, CEO of HashKey Capital, told The Block, “We are now at the bottom of the next cycle. That’s why we closed the fund and launched it officially.”

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Disclaimer: The content presented is for informational purposes only and does not constitute financial, investment, tax, legal, or professional advice. The content is provided ‘as is’ without any representations or warranties, express or implied.

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