Social token infrastructure provider Roll raised $10 million in Series A funding, bringing the company’s total funds raised to $12.7 million to help creators tokenize their interactions with communities.
Led by IOSG Ventures, the funding round saw participation from Animoca Brands, Alchemy, Huobi Ventures, Weekend Fund, Mischief Fund, Audacity and existing investors like Galaxy Interactive, Hustle Fund, Gary Vaynerchuk, Trevor McFederies, Ryan Selkis and Balaji Srinivasan.
Social tokens are blockchain-based digital currencies that have the potential to be used as the basis of a decentralized creator economy. “Through Roll, decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs) and communities can tokenize, trade and gate-keep content for those that are part of the community,” IOSG Ventures founding partner Jocy Lin explained, adding that a social token enables its holders to join and contribute to a community.
Defining the explosive growth and popularity of nonfungible tokens (NFTs) as a “cultural bull market,” Roll co-founder and CEO Bradley Miles said that this bull market became a renaissance for artists, musicians and creators worldwide: “NFTs represent the future of content on blockchains. At some point this decade, it will emerge as a new normal for art, videos, games, music and any other content that creators want to make ownable.”
Speaking to Cointelegraph, Miles explained that the launch of a social token is similar to the launch of a YouTube channel or Patreon: "Let your closest supporters know beforehand and broadcast it out on your largest platform when you are ready."
On the technical side, Roll helps to integrate social tokens into web applications such as marketplaces, streaming services and DAOs by providing the infrastructure and application programming interfaces or APIs. Powered by Ethereum smart contracts, Roll’s social tokens can interact with traditional web platforms and DeFi protocols.
The company said that the service is currently being used by over 350 creators, including Whaleshark and Terry Crews. Listing some of Roll’s social tokens, crypto exchange Huobi is among the investors via its venture arm. Jerry Yip of Huobi Ventures commented on Roll’s expansion, saying: “Roll’s platform for social tokens has stepped on the two relatively clear trends of influence tokenization and a new emerging economy for communities.”
The company plans to open up its APIs to more developers as early as next year.