Venture capitalists are infusing a large amount of investment into blockchain-related companies at the fastest pace in years.
Nearly 130 blockchain startups were granted $2.6 billion of investments in the first quarter of the current year, figures by tech market intelligence platform CB Insights shows.
The data is already bigger compared to last year’s, wherein blockchain startups raised $2.3 billion in 341 deals.
Heavy funding from big players
The increase was propelled by multiple major funding rounds for companies including crypto lender BlockFi Inc., game-developer Dapper Labs, and virtual wallet provider Blockchain.com.
Dapper Labs secured $305 million in funding from superstar athletes like Michael Jordan and Kevin Durant, with the full round being spearheaded by investment company Coatue. The funding put Dapper’s market cap at an impressive $2.6 billion.
As the funding boom continues, bitcoin (BTC) has registered all-time highs. Companies like Tesla and Mastercard have boosted their position with their support for cryptocurrency in recent months.
London-headquartered Blockchain.com announced that it had secured $300 million in its Series C funding round, which gave the company $5.2 billion in valuation.
Crypto shifting toward the mainstream
Blockchain’s latest funding came just one month after it had raised $120 million, with Kyle Bass and Louis Bacon among its backers.
Coinbase, the biggest U.S. crypto exchange, is seeking a direct listing on the NASDAQ, which is likely to benefit many early investors — and entice more venture capitalists to pile into the crypto arena.
Cryptocurrency has been moving toward the mainstream. According to Sean Rolland, chief of product for blockchain payment technology group BitPay, the large payouts could be the ultimate stage that will slingshot digital currency to greater heights.
Corporates have also been replacing dollars in their treasuries. The world’s most sought-after digital token, Bitcoin, is now viewed as part of a risk-on cushion against inflation.
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