February 7, 2023

Even with the onset of the crypto winter, 2022 was a watershed year for venture capital funding. Crypto and blockchain companies combined raised $30.3 billion in venture capital in the first half of 2022, exceeding all of last year’s totals. While the number of deals has declined in recent months, startups at the intersection of blockchain payments, decentralized finance (DeFi) and cybersecurity are still attracting huge interest from the VC community. The latest release of the VC Roundup highlights some of the most interesting financing deals of the past month.

Related: Risks and Benefits of VCs for Crypto Communities

ZEBEDEE Closes $35 Million Series B

ZEBEDEE, a Bitcoin (BTC) payment processor for the gaming industry, has raised $35 million from several investors including Kingsway Capital, The Raine Group and Square Enix. ZEBEDEE is basically a platform that allows game developers to incorporate programmable money, including BTC, into their games. The payment platform is powered by the Lightning Network, making ZEBEDEE the “preferred Bitcoin-enabled option” for its partners, according to Kingsway Capital managing partner Afonso Campos.

Blockchain Security Firm Raise $90 Million Series A

Blockchain security firm Halborn closed a $90 million funding round in July led by Summit Partners, with additional participation from Castle Island Ventures, Digital Currency Group, and Brevan Howard, among others. Halborn was founded in 2019 by an ethical hacker that provides blockchain security services. The company recently warned MetaMask users to get tired of a phishing campaign targeting their browser wallets.

DeFi Hashflow has raised $25 million in Series A funding

Hashflow, a San Francisco-based decentralized finance trading platform, has closed a $25 million funding round backed by some crypto investment funds. The investment round, which involved Jump Crypto, Electric Capital, Dragonfly Capital Partners and GSR, will help Hashflow expand its product offerings to market brands and institutional traders.

Socios acquires 24.5% stake in Barca Studios

Socios, the tokenized fan-sharing platform, announced in early August that it would invest $100 million in Barca Studios, the digital content arm of FC Barcelona. Socios, owned by blockchain technology company Chiliz, will help FC Barcelona accelerate its Web3 and Non-Fungible Token (NFT) sharing strategy. Specifically, Barca Studios is pursuing NFT and metaverse projects that will help the football club engage with its vast global fan base, and will rely on the Socios blockchain to implement the strategy.

Related: CryptoBiz: Gucci “Monkeys” in Crypto

EtherMail secures seed funding for wallet-to-wallet connections

Web3 EtherMail has raised $3 million ahead of the planned launch of its wallet-to-wallet encrypted communications service. Scheduled to be launched in the third quarter, EtherMail allows Web3 companies to send “rich, directly related content to asset owners,” thus reducing the risk of communications fraud. The service also simplifies the distribution of community newsletters by enabling self-updating mailing lists. He led the Fabric Ventures and Greenfield One seed tour.