According to the release, the total amount of awards is over $3 million. The biggest grants worth $500,000 were given to Prysmatic Labs and Status. Both companies are working to develop the Ethereum 2.0 ecosystem first announced by co-founder Vitalik Buterin in November 2017.
Grant recipients were divided by the manner in which they contributed to the development of the network, such as scalability, usability, and security. Adult entertainment platform SpankChain received a $420,000 grant for working on the open-source software developer kit (SDK) for a non-custodial payment channel hub.
Other large grants went to Prototypal and Finality Labs for front-end state channel research and the development of forward-time locked contracts, respectively.
In the announcement, the Ethereum team has also expressed its gratitude to members of community, promising to increase their involvement in the network’s development:
"Thank you to all the fantastic community members that have applied with creative ideas on how to bolster our ecosystem. We would not exist without the time and energy that you put into Ethereum. While the program continues to grow, we will increasingly continue to involve more community members in the decision making process."
In February 2018, six large-scale blockchain projects created the Ethereum Capital Fund. OmiseGo, Cosmos, Golem, Maker, Raiden, and Japanese venture capital firm Global Brain announced they would grant a cumulative $100 million to different projects that developed the Ethereum blockchain ecosystem. Buterin subsequently announced he would join project as an advisor.
Buterin himself also donates money to open-source projects building innovative technologies such as scaling solutions for the Ethereum Blockchain network. In September 2017, he announced that his advisor shares from OmiseGo and decentralized cryptocurrency exchange Kyber Network would be donated to charity or used to fund Ethereum second-layer infrastructure development.