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VC roundup: Humanity Protocol hits unicorn status, Arch Labs, others secure major funding

vc-roundup-humanity-protocol-hits-unicorn-status-arch-labs-others-secure-major-funding
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VC roundup: Humanity Protocol hits unicorn status, Arch Labs, others secure major funding

More crypto startups are raising seed rounds and pre-A funding. Below, we look at some of the main beneficiaries of last week’s venture capital (VC) activities.

Humanity Protocol gets $30-million boost

Humanity Protocol, a decentralized identity solution, has reached unicorn status with a $1 billion valuation. This milestone came after securing $30 million in a seed round led by Kingsway Capital. 

Other investors included Animoca Brands, Blockchain.com, Hashed, Shima Capital, and 20 more industry leaders.

According to a Medium post by Humanity Protocol, the funds will be used to expand the team and develop products ahead of the public testnet launch in the second half of 2024.

https://twitter.com/Humanityprot/status/1790715567642476653

The latest funding round comes only months after Humanity Protocol received strategic investment to build the “human layer” for web3.

The money came from several VC funds and individuals, including Polygon founder Sandeep Nailwal and Animoca Brands co-founder Yat Siu. 

Arch Labs secures $7 million

New York-based Arch Labs raised $7 million in seed funding to enhance its Bitcoin-native application platform. The round was led by Multicoin Capital, with participation from OKX Ventures, Portal Ventures, Big Brain Holdings, CMS Holdings, and Tangent. 

The company will reportedly use the funds to support the hiring of core developers, the launch of the Arch Network mainnet in the second half of 2024, and ongoing support for its app ecosystem. 

Arch Labs is developing a “bridgeless” trading experience directly on the Bitcoin (BTC) blockchain. It will feature a Rust-based zkVM called the ArchVM and a decentralized verifier network.

Uxuy clinches $7 million

Singapore-based Uxuy also secured $7 million. The pre-A funding round will be used to promote efficient, low-cost transactions of assets like Lightning Network taproot assets, ordinals BRC-20, and Runes

Binance Labs, UTXO Management (Bitcoin Magazine), JDI Ventures, Bixin Ventures, SWC Global and Matrix Partners were among the investors. 

Uxuy aims to provide a seamless trading experience across various blockchain networks and is incubated by Binance Labs.

Arcium nabs $5.5 million

Arcium, an on-chain confidential computing project from Bern, Switzerland, also secured $5.5 million in funding. 

Greenfield Capital led the round and saw participation from Coinbase, Heartcore Capital, Longhash VC, L2 Iterative Ventures, and several angel investors. 

Arcium is building a parallelized confidential computing network that leverages multiparty computation execution environments (MXEs) for secure computation on encrypted data. 

The funds will help expand development efforts and support the upcoming private incentivized testnet and public testnet phases.

Gnosis partners with Zeal, invests $2 million

Another winner in the latest VC funding rounds was digital wallet creator Zeal, who got into a strategic partnership with Gnosis, an Ethereum (ETH) sidechain, with part of the collaboration being a $2 million investment from Gnosis.

https://twitter.com/GnosisDAO/status/1788533338212348047

The $2 million commitment from Gnosis brings Zeal’s total funding to $9 million after the company raked in $7 million in a previous seed round.

Zest Protocol locks in $3.5 million

Wrapping up the week’s VC action, Bitcoin lending protocol Zest raised $3.5 million to enable BTC holders to generate yields on-chain. 

Led by billionaire investor Tim Draper, the seed round also saw contributions from Binance Labs, Flow Traders, Trust Machines, and others. 

Zest Protocol leverages the Nakamoto upgrade by Bitcoin layer-2 Stacks and the bridging asset sBTC, which is pegged 1:1 to Bitcoin, to create a fully native Bitcoin lending experience.