It’s still possible to raise money for scalable blockchain infrastructure despite the talk of a market decline.
StarkWare Industries, which recently raised $100 million at a value of $8 billion, is the most recent illustration of this truth. In the previous six months, the unicorn had raised $50 million in a Series C round, bringing its total value to $8 billion, quadrupling its previous $2 billion valuation.
StarkWare’s Series D closed “immediately after LUNA fell,” according to StarkWare co-founder and president Eli Ben-Sasson, in the middle of the current crypto market volatility. This $100 million investment event demonstrates investor confidence in the need for blockchain infrastructure enhancements as mega-rounds become less common in the crypto industry (and other industries) than in prior quarters.
Benjamin Sasson said that this value represents a vote of confidence in the ecosystem at large. A number of organisations, like Polygon and Arbitrum, are part of this larger [layer-2] ecosystem. We’re quite excited about what they’re doing.
Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Avalanche, for example, are examples of Layer-1 blockchains.
Greenoaks Capital and Coatue led the financing. New and current investors, including Tiger Global, were involved. As a result of the Series D, some of the company’s current workers have decided to sell a portion of their shares. Ben-Sasson estimates that StarkWare has so far raised around $260 million.
Uri Kolodny, StarkWare’s co-founder and CEO, stated, “We have constantly engaged investors who have shared our vision of the future.” Building for the long term is what we’re doing here.
Kolodny said the firm “didn’t need the money” from the Series C when it raised $50 million in November 2021, but the financing helped it expand its operations quicker. No information was given as to whether or not the funds had been put to use.
As a result of its “STARK” mathematical methods, the firm was created in 2017 and intends to offer scalability and security solutions for Ethereum-based applications. Kolodny said that the company’s personnel has grown from 50 to 85 in the last year.
According to Ben-Sasson: “Developers, ecosystem and community all acknowledge that blockchain has a bottleneck and our technology is one of a tiny list of things that can ease this.”
According to Ben-Sasson, STARK reduces transaction costs by lowering the amount of data delivered to the Ethereum blockchain and speeds up transactions by reducing congestion. StarkEx, the platform that compresses transactions via STARK before adding them to the Ethereum blockchain network, has seen nearly half a trillion dollars in trades to far.
“Our technology assures the blockchain of the integrity of computation,” Ben-Sasson said. “Integrity is a very important thing … we use math, which is the most elegant and pure form of truth and integrity. In order to imbue integrity on large chunks of computation off-chain and show it to the blockchain.”
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