Venture capital for crypto companies hit an all-time high of $ 6.5 billion in 339 rounds between July and September 2021 – and that’s only counted from public transactions, according to the report. This is the third straight record this year, with $ 3.83 billion and $ 5.131 billion in the first and second quarters. Notably, the latest numbers nearly double the total amount raised in 2020 when VC funds invested $ 3.8 billion in blockchain companies.
In the third quarter of 2021, crypto companies hit a record $ 6.5 billion | Source: block data
Who are the biggest winners with so much money going into the industry?
1. FTX – $ 900 million
Backed by 29-year-old billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried, the FTX crypto exchange closed a massive $ 900 million Series B funding round in July, increasing the company’s valuation to $ 18 billion.
More than 60 investors, including Sequoia Capital, Paradigm and Coinbase Ventures, participated in the largest financing round in the history of the industry. This money is known to be used for many different mergers and acquisitions. Shortly thereafter, FTX.US, the US arm of the exchange, announced plans to acquire LedgerX, a cryptocurrency derivatives trading platform regulated by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).
2. Sorare – $ 680 million
Sorare, a fast-growing fantasy football game based on the Ethereum NFT token, raised $ 680 million in September at a valuation of $ 4.3 billion. The Series B round was led by Japanese investment group SoftBank, which has previously funded several other crypto companies. Currently, Sorare’s NFT game includes over 200 licensed soccer clubs including FC Barcelona, Juventus FC, Paris Saint-Germain FC and Liverpool FC, as well as representative players for the United States’ Major League Soccer Players Association.
3. Genesis Digital – $ 431 million
Genesis Digital Assets – a US Bitcoin mining company – has closed a $ 431 million financing round led by Paradigm, in which the New York Digital Investment Group (NYDIG) and FTX, among others, participate.
This marks the second round of the third quarter for Genesis Digital. In July, the company raised $ 125 million from UK investment manager Kingsway Capital. Genesis Digital is currently heading for an active expansion. The company expects to achieve a data center capacity of 1.4 gigawatts by the end of 2023, eight times the capacity by September 2021.
4. Fire Blocks – $ 310 million
Fireblocks, a New York-based company that provides digital asset custody, transfer, and settlement infrastructure for clients such as banks and exchanges, raised $ 310 million in July. The Series D funding is jointly led by Sequoia Capital, Stripes, Spark Capital, Coatue, DRW VC and SCB 10X and has raised the valuation of the company to $ 2 billion.
Previously, in March, Fireblocks raised $ 133 million in Series C, with the company’s primary clients being SVB Capital and BNY Mellon.
5. Bitpanda – $ 263 million
Another project to join the Unicorn Club is Bitpanda, the leading cryptocurrency trading platform in Europe. In August, the Austria-based company announced a new $ 263 million capital increase led by Peter Thiels Valar Ventures. The Series C round gave Bitpanda a valuation of $ 4.1 billion – more than three times what it was valued after raising $ 170 million in March this year.
Bitpanda plans to use the new capital to expand its B2B presence with banks and fintech companies, as well as to open up new markets in Europe.
Other notable rounds of funding in the third quarter include Dapper Labs ($ 250 million), FalconX ($ 210 million), Blockstream ($ 210 million), Mercado Bitcoin ($ 200 million), and Blockdaemon ($ 155 million) -Dollar).
The most active crypto investors this quarter
In terms of actively participating in funding rounds in the third quarter of 2021, the report shows that Coinbase Ventures was present in 18 rounds, and it’s interesting that the company is investing in FTX Exchange and CoinDCX, both cryptocurrency exchanges like Coinbase.
According to the report, one possible reason could be that Coinbase is mistaking FTX and CoinDCX for a different type of customer than they are. This means that the San Francisco exchange can diversify risk by investing in other types of crypto exchanges.
After Coinbase, Animoca Brands and Polychain Capital follow with 10 and 11 investments respectively. An important name that is missing in the data is of course Andreessen Horowitz’s a16z. A16z’s latest investment in the crypto space is in CoinSwitch Kuber, an exchange based in India.