VC roundup: Blockchain startups raise $258m in a week, Farcaster leads with $150m series A

Blockchain startups raise $258m in a week

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During the week of May 19 to May 25, blockchain startups collectively raised over $258 million, spearheaded by decentralized social protocol Farcaster’s $150 million series A round.

According to Crypto Fundraising, four startups raised $179.2 million in Series A rounds in the last seven days, while 12 startups got $24.1 million via unknown rounds.

VC roundup: Blockchain startups raise $258m in a week, Farcaster leads with $150m series A - 1
Crypto fundraising May 19 – 25 | Source: Crypto Fundraising

Five startups gained $21.3 million from seed rounds; two locked in $20 million combined from strategic rounds.

Another two startups earned $9 million from private rounds, while a final one raised $5 million from a public sale round.

Below is a roundup of the week’s crypto VC action.

Farcaster hits unicorn status with $150m series A

Ethereum-based decentralized social media protocol Farcaster secured $150 million in a Series A funding round led by venture firm Paradigm. The round also featured significant contributions from a16z crypto, Haun Ventures, Union Square Ventures, and Standard Crypto, among others. It elevated Farcaster’s valuation to a staggering $1 billion, marking its entry into unicorn territory.

Co-founder Dan Romero shared that the protocol will use the fresh capital in two primary areas: increasing daily active users and enhancing developer tools like channels and direct messaging. Additionally, Farcaster plans to hire more engineers to support these initiatives.

Plume Network raises $10m for L2 blockchain

Plume Network, a modular Layer 2 (L2) network designed to facilitate the on-chain integration of real-world assets (RWAs), also announced a successful $10 million seed funding round led by Haun Ventures. 

The California-based venture capital firm was joined in the round by Galaxy Ventures, Superscrypt, A Capital, SV Angel, and Portal Ventures. Several angel investors, such as Anthony Ramirez from Wormhole Labs and Andrew Kang from Mechanism, also participated.

Plume CEO Chris Yin stated that the funds will advance the company’s mission of simplifying the process of bringing assets like real estate and art onto blockchain platforms.

Blockless secures $8m for decentralized infrastructure expansion

Blockless, a decentralized physical infrastructure network (DePIN) project, raised $8 million across two early funding rounds. 

The initial $3 million pre-seed round was led by NGC Ventures, followed by a $5 million seed round co-led by M31 Capital and Frachtis. Additional investors included No Limit Holdings, MH Ventures, Interop Ventures, and Plassa Capital.

The project’s co-founder, Butian Li, revealed that the funds will support the launch of a test network in the coming weeks. A main network and native BLESS token are set for release in Q3 2024.

Pencils Protocol, IVX secure seed funding

Pencils Protocol, an auction platform and yield aggregator on the Scroll network, raised $2.1 million in a seed round led by OKX Ventures, Animoca Brands, and Galxe. 

Meanwhile, another project, IVX, secured $1.2 million in a seed round backed by Animoca Ventures and other investors. 

IVX is building a native options protocol on Berachain Polaris EVM, providing zero-day to expiry (0DTE) options for crypto assets, allowing users high leverage exposure without liquidation risk.

Cysic, RunesFi announce new funding rounds

Cysic, a zero-knowledge (ZK) hardware acceleration company, raised $12 million in a pre-A funding round led by HashKey Capital and OKX Ventures. 

According to the team behind the project, the funding will accelerate the generation of ZK proofs, making them faster and more cost-efficient.

Finally, RunesFi, an infrastructure hub for Bitcoin, raised $400,000 in a funding round led by Cogitent Ventures.

Using the Runes Protocol, RunesFi aims to enhance Bitcoin’s decentralized finance (defi) capabilities with features like a decentralized exchange (DEX) and infrastructure products to support efficient transactions and lower costs.

Browse past ‘VC Roundups’ below:

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