Gaming, crypto-fintech and blockchain infrastructure dominate venture capital cycles

Cryptocurrency markets remain caught in a macro downtrend, with Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH) showing further signs of weakness in late April. But venture capital activity in the crypto and blockchain sectors is the strongest it has ever been, offering further evidence that major investors are looking beyond immediate price action. and ignore divisive bull/bear narratives. The latest edition of VC Roundup shines a light on the growing excitement around Web3 games, decentralized finance (DeFi) and blockchain infrastructure.

The first quarter of 2022 was brutal for crypto prices, but venture capital activity was the strongest ever.

bloXroute raises $70 million from major investors

Blockchain delivery network provider bloXroute has raised $70 million in funding to continue building scalable infrastructure services for the cryptocurrency and DeFi industries. The Series B funding round was led by SoftBank Vision Fund 2, with participation from Dragonfly Capital, Jane Street, ParaFi Capital, Blindspot, GSR and others. The company recently launched its Blockchain distribution network, which is believed to overcome network congestion to provide users with reliable buy and sell order information.

HBAR Foundation launches $50 million fintech innovation fund

The promoter of the Hedera ecosystem, the HBAR Foundation, has launched a $50 million fund to encourage Hedera-focused development work around central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), stablecoins, transfer services funds, micropayments and asset tokenization. The fintech and payments fund is now seeking proposals for these and other finance-based integrations. At the time of writing, Hedera was the 35th most valuable blockchain network with a total market capitalization of $3.2 billion, according to CoinMarketCap.

Related: HBAR Foundation Launches $250M Metaverse Fund to Improve Adoption of Consumer Brands

Crypto Industry Heavyweights Back Decentralized Venture Capital Studio

Web3 venture capital studio Decent Labs has partnered with BlockTower Capital, Digital Currency Group and others to launch a new decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) incubator ecosystem called Decent DAO. Backers have allocated a total of $10 million in on-chain investments to the initiative at a valuation of $56 million. Decent DAO wants to solve a major problem that plagues many decentralized autonomous organizations – namely, a lack of proper governance and leadership – and has developed a system that ensures that all project funders are fully invested in the space.

a16z raises $34 million

Andreessen Horowitz, also known as a16z, led a $34 million funding round for decentralized identity startup Spruce. The Series A funding round also saw participation from Ethereal Ventures, Electric Capital, and Y Combinator, among others. Spruce is developing a protocol that allows users to control their personal data in the Web2 and Web3 economies. Spruce has also partnered with the Ethereum Foundation to develop a new authentication method for Ethereum accounts and ENS profiles.

Game industry veterans raise capital for Web3 studio

The gaming industry pros, formerly of EA, Disney and Epic Games, have raised $4 million for Playmint, a new development studio developing massively multiplayer chain games, also known as MMOCGs. The round was led by BITKRAFT Ventures with participation from Ethereal Ventures, Cherry Ventures, Play Ventures and 1kx. Playmint’s first title is called The Crypta blockchain based loot dungeon game.

Related: Animoca Brands will bet big on blockchain MMORPG games

GamerGains closes $5.8 million funding round backed by Winklevoss Capital

Developer GamerGains Labs has closed a $5.8 million funding round to support the development of a cryptocurrency-based gaming and earning (P2E) platform. Unlike other crypto-focused developers, GamerGains is building a platform for traditional PC and console gamers, allowing gamers to earn crypto and token rewards for typical gameplay. The funding round has benefited from the support of some of the biggest blockchain venture capital studios, including Tiger Global, FTX, Winklevoss Capital, CMS Holdings, and BlockFi.

Blockchain developer Venly raises $23 million

Belgian technology provider Venly is looking to bring more industries to blockchain and has secured $23 million in Series A investments to pursue this initiative. The funding round was led by Courtside Ventures with participation from Transcend Fund, Coinbase Ventures, Tioga Capital and others. The company, which develops tools and APIs that allow Web2 businesses to use Web3 technology, focuses primarily on game publishers and e-commerce businesses. Its application programming interface (API) platform has been used by Shopify and The Sandbox, among others.

Related: Crypto Biz: If you think crypto is bearish, you’re not paying attention, April 21-27, 2022 Secures $6M Series A Funding

Decentralized finance platform has raised funds to continue developing its consumer-focused DeFi products and tools. The platform allows DeFi users to connect their crypto wallets and earn returns on their Bitcoin, Ether, and other holdings. The funding round, which was secured through a combination of crypto and fiat, was led by Libertus Capital, with additional participation from several crypto industry angel investors.

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