Non-fungible token (NFT) platform Zora has raised $50 million in a seed round to expand its service to customers. The investment was led by prominent venture capital firms such as Haun Ventures, Coinbase Ventures, and Kindred Ventures.
Zora valued at over $600 million
NFTs remain an interesting feature for most crypto players, allowing many startups to raise multi-million dollar investments to strengthen their position in the space. The latest such entity is Zora.
It secured $50 million in funding from Katie Haun’s new crypto fund, Haun Ventures. Other participants include Kindred Ventures and Coinbase Ventures. Notably, this is the first time Haun’s recently formed organization has used funds. Before that, she was with Andreessen Horowitz (a16z).
Sam Rosenblum, a partner at Haun Ventures, classifies non-fungible tokens as “a core building block critical to the future of Web3.”
He added: “We also believe that Web3 innovations like NFTs are a positive force for the openness and decentralization of networks that are currently too centralized and opaque gatekeepers.”
The latest funding brings Zora’s valuation to $600 million. The agreement vows to use the new funds to create a customer-friendly ecosystem where every user can launch NFT collections, independent marketplaces and experiences. Zora co-founder Jacob Horne commented on the move:
“For our ecosystem, it’s an acceleration of public infrastructure that fuels your growth as an artist, developer, and community. It means deploying more permissionless code on more chains, better APIs, more Zoratopias around the world, and an increase in funding and hackathons.”
Last March, Zora raised $8 million through an equity sale, and in October 2020, it secured a $2 million investment.
Katie Hawn’s new challenge
Earlier this year, Katie Haun, a former general partner at Andreessen Horowitz, left the firm to set up a venture capital fund focused on cryptocurrency and Web3 startups. Other a16z members have also joined her entity, such as Rachael Horwitz (Head of Crypto Marketing).
Shortly after, Haun revealed her firm intends to raise as much as $900 million for a pair of digital asset investment funds. $300 million of that will go to crypto startups, and the remaining $600 million will go to a fund dedicated to other companies and digital tokens.
However, recent reports indicate that she actually raised a whopping $1.5 billion, making it the largest amount raised by a female independent founding member.
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