Dfinity attracts big bet from Andreessen Horowitz

August 30, 2018
Chris Wheal

Dfinity Foundation, a blockchain start-up that plans to provide ways of enabling public decentralized networks to host a virtual computer of unlimited capacity, has announced a pre-sale funding round that has attracted some of the world’s biggest venture capital firms.

Dfinity team: Dominic Williams, president (standing) welcomes new funding

The funding raised SFr102m ($105.2m) in a private sale of tokens to a number of firms including Polychain Capital, SV Angel, Aspect Ventures and Multicoin Capital.

a16z crypto fund

Andreessen Horowitz, which runs the $300m a16z crypto fund, said Dfinity was now the biggest position in its two-month old digital assets fund.

The venture capitalist, often called simply a16z because of the 16 letter letters between the “a” and the “z” in Andreessen Horowitz, would not disclose how much it had invested in Dfinity, but it was also a participant in the project’s seed funding stage.

The new round of funding now brings the total amount raised by Dfinity to $190m.

Internet computer

“We are very pleased to have our ongoing efforts validated by illustrious investors and to receive so much support from the community,” Dfinity’s president and chief scientist Dominic Williams wrote on the company’s blog.

It will use the capital raised to develop its “internet computer”, designed to host the next generation of software and services. The launch of the Dfinity network is currently scheduled for early 2019.

Williams concluded: “Our aim is to build out what we term a ‘NASA for decentralization’ to stand behind the network. The new funding will enable us to push forward with even more confidence.”

Crypto-powered services

Chris Dixon, partner at Andreessen Horowitz, explains a16z as: “A venture fund that will invest in crypto companies and protocols. Our fund is designed to include the best features of traditional venture capital, updated to the modern crypto world.

He adds: “We are focused on non-speculative use cases. We want services powered by crypto protocols to be used by hundreds of millions and eventually billions of people.

“Crypto tokens are the native asset class of digital networks, but their value is driven by the underlying, practical uses cases.”

Post written by Chris Wheal
Chris Wheal is editor of OpenLedger's news and features service. An award-wining business journalists himself, he runs a team of freelance journalists from across the UK and north America.

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