Diem co-creator David Marcus launches crypto project
Facebook stablecoin Diem's co-creator David Marcus has launched a Bitcoin firm backed by A16z and Paradigm
By Shashank Bhardwaj
Image: ERIC PIERMONT / AFP
David Marcus, the former head of Facebook’s crypto operations and the co-creator of the now-closed stablecoin project Diem, has launched his own Bitcoin-based crypto startup Lightspark. The Bitcoin startup will be involved in expanding Bitcoin’s use cases, as per a report from the Block.
David’s startup will be backed by notable names in the crypto investing circle, including Matrix Partners, A16z, Coatue, Thrive Capital, Felix Capital, Ribbit Capital, Zeev Ventures, and Paradigm. Lightspark will develop backend infrastructure for companies, merchants, and developers who want to accept Bitcoin payments and transact via the Lightning Network. The Lightning Network is an upcoming upgrade on the Bitcoin network that will solve Bitcoin’s scalability and speed issues by lending support for microtransactions of a less expensive nature.
"We’ve always been big believers in Bitcoin’s unique history and role in crypto. We've been looking to back a team to build on top of Bitcoin and believe David Marcus and the Lightspark team that he's assembled can bring exciting new technological innovation to Bitcoin and the Lightning Network," a16z investor Sriram Krishan commented on the deal.
David Marcus took to Twitter to announce the launch of his new venture. He said that Lightspark would leverage Bitcoin and the Lightning network. The Lightspark team includes other ex-employees from Meta, besides Marcus, who left the company after Meta’s stablecoin project repeatedly failed to launch. Meta’s Diem stablecoin project was sold to Silvergatein a $200 million deal in January.
Marcus did not reveal the details of the project or how much valuation his firm will be seeking in the funding round. Marcus said that the company would explore, build, and expand Bitcoin capabilities and use cases via a team ‘to dive deeper into the lightning network.’
Many of the Diem executives moved to a16z Crypto, one of the lead investors in the Lightspark project. The Diem project has continued in the form of Aptos, a new blockchain announced by the former Diem developers in February. Meta, on the other hand, is focusing on integrating NFT support on its Instagram and Facebook app.
Shashank is the founder at yMedia. He ventured into crypto in 2013 and is an ETH maximalist. Twitter: @bhardwajshash
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