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Polychain, Coinfund Defy VC Funding Drought

We also cover China's crackdown on crypto gambling, an ex-FTX senior exec's move to Sino Global Capital, Shinhan Bank's stablecoin tests on Hedera Network, IMF's warning against crypto as legal tender, and Ubisoft's new role as a Cronos blockchain validator.

July 19, 2023

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In a time when the crypto market is experiencing a significant funding drought, two venture capital firms, Polychain Capital and Coinfund, have managed to raise a combined $350 million.

Polychain Capital, a blockchain-focused venture capital firm, has reportedly raised around $200 million in an initial close for its fourth crypto VC fund. The firm still plans to raise $400 million in total for the fund, matching the targeted amount in an April filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. This comes amidst a shift in investing focus and a reduction in its research team.

On the other hand, Coinfund, a New York-based VC firm with 105 companies in its portfolio, announced that it pulled in $152 million in its latest round. Coinfund's co-founder and chief investment officer, Alex Felix, stated that the firm’s priority lies with projects that further develop the infrastructure around crypto, particularly as they relate to enabling more decentralization.

These fundraising successes come against a backdrop of a broad retreat from crypto-related investments following a series of failures throughout 2022. Despite these challenges, both Polychain and Coinfund have shown that there is still significant interest and potential in the crypto market.

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Reflecting on this, it's clear that the crypto market is not for the faint of heart. It's a space filled with volatility, uncertainty, and risk. But it's also a space filled with opportunity, innovation, and potential. The fundraising successes of Polychain and Coinfund are a testament to this. They show that even in the face of adversity, there are those who are willing to take risks, to invest in the future of this industry.

They're betting on the fact that despite the current challenges, the crypto market will rebound, that the potential rewards outweigh the risks. So, while the current funding environment may be challenging, it's not all doom and gloom. There are still those who believe in the potential of this industry, who are willing to invest in its future. And that, in itself, is a reason for optimism.

Elsewhere,

  • Chinese Authorities Crack Down on Crypto Gambling: Chinese authorities in Hubei Province have announced their first-ever case of cryptocurrency confiscation equivalent to $160 million through a court ruling. The case involved a large-scale cross-border online gambling operation with a turnover of approximately $56 billion and over 50,000 people involved. The operation used cryptocurrency to facilitate illicit activities, making it difficult for authorities to trace the origin of funds.
  • Ex-FTX COO Constance Wang Joins Sino Global Capital: Zhe "Constance" Wang, former COO of FTX, has joined crypto venture capital firm Sino Global Capital. Singapore-educated Wang, who led FTX's global business expansion, has been in China since FTX and its sister trading firm Alameda Research filed for bankruptcy.
  • Shinhan Bank Tests Stablecoin Payments on Hedera Network: The South Korean bank has completed a feasibility test for stablecoin remittance payments using Hedera's distributed ledger technology. The project aims to rectify cross-border payments problems arising from high fees, lengthy settlements times, and the absence of tracking features.
  • IMF Urges Fiat Currency to Be Protected From Crypto: The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has urged countries to protect their sovereign fiat currency from crypto assets. In a blog post, the IMF warns that granting crypto assets official currency or legal tender status could generate fiscal risks for government finances and could threaten financial stability or rapid inflation.
  • Ubisoft Becomes Cronos Blockchain Validator: Video game giant Ubisoft has joined forces with the Cronos network as a validator. Ubisoft will produce or confirm new blocks on the network as transactions are processed. This is just the latest move by Ubisoft to expand its reach in the NFT gaming space.




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