The sharp increase in global interest rates may have limited investors’ appetite for crypto ventures, but new projects are still flourishing and attracting capital to speed up growth. Data from the Cointelegraph Research Venture Capital Database shows June closed out with a 29.73% decrease in venture capital investments, with just $779.32 million secured in 62 deals, compared to June 2022. However, the overall trend for the year shows a rise in venture capital deals. Cointelegraph’s VC roundup highlights the latest projects striving in this complex and competitive environment.
Orbital raises $6.4M to expand enterprise blockchain services
Enterprise crypto platform Orbital raised $6.4 million (5 million euros) in a funding round led by venture firm Golden Record Ventures. Additional investors included New Form Capital, GSRV and Luminous Futures. The funding will be used to expand Orbital’s product development — specifically, blockchain payment infrastructure for traditional businesses. The company allows traditional businesses to accept crypto payments from its customers and convert them into fiat currencies like the U.S. dollar, euro and British pound. The company claims to process $250 million in transactions every month for its clients.
DeFi protocol unshETH raises $3.3 million in seed round
The project unshETH, a decentralized finance protocol targeting Ethereum staking solutions, closed a $3.3 million seed round in August. The funds were backed by Soma Capital and ICONIQ Capital, along with several other investors, including Fan Zhang, co-founder of Sequoia Capital China. The unshETH protocol encourages competition among Ether (ETH) liquid staking protocols to promote the decentralization of validators. Its omnichain token reportedly supports transfers across different blockchains, including Ethereum, BNB Chain and Arbitrum. The funds will be used to support the development of liquid staking-related features.
GM unshETHians! Read about our seed round and latest roadmap updates here:https://t.co/o2ow91OKMA— unshETH (@unsheth_xyz) August 22, 2023
Web3 creator ZTX attracts $13M in funding
Web3 virtual world platform ZTX recently concluded a $13 million seed round led by Jump Crypto, with participation from several other investors, including Collab+Currency and MZ Web3 Fund. ZTX is a collaborative effort between Jump Crypto and ZEPETO, one of the world’s largest metaverse platforms. Launched in 2022, ZTX has recently introduced its first playtest, an invite-only beta test of its upcoming 3D open-world platform. The freshly raised funds will be used to support the development of Web3 infrastructure for creators in 3D, immersive environments.
6️⃣ Blockchain VC investment drops 29.73% in June, with $779.32M in 62 deals. Infrastructure sector leads with $493.1M in 20 deals. pic.twitter.com/kVRCMYCAaF— Cointelegraph (@Cointelegraph) July 25, 2023
Stroom Network vies to streamline Bitcoin staking with $3.5M raise
Bitcoin liquid staking protocol Stroom Network has completed a $3.5 million seed round led by Greenfield, a Berlin-based crypto investment fund, with additional participation from Ankr’s venture arm, Mission Street. Operating on Bitcoin’s Lightning Network (LN), Stroom allows users to more easily utilize their Bitcoin (BTC) capital on LN and the Ethereum network simultaneously. The funding will be used to expand operational capacity and release the protocol’s liquid staking token on the Ethereum mainnet. LN is widely regarded as Bitcoin’s most promising layer-2 network; its current capacity is 4,743.97 BTC, according to 1ml.
Web3 art platform Fxhash closes $5M funding round
Digital art platform Fxhash has raised $5 million in seed investments led by Web3 venture firm 1kx, with additional participation from Fabric Ventures, Bright Opportunities DAO, Tezos Foundation and Union Square Ventures. The platform enables artists to create, list and collect generative art — a form of digital art created using computer code. The company claims its platform has minted over 2 million unique pieces of generative art since its inception in 2021. Some blockchain observers have touted artificial intelligence-generative art as being the next major trend in the nonfungible tokens sector.
Additional reporting by Sam Bourgi.