Sandeep Nailwal, the founder of blockchain infrastructure provider Polygon, has raised $50 million for a new startup fund named Symbolic Capital
By Shashank Bhardwaj
Launched in May by Nailwal, ex-Borderless Capital and Cere co-founder Kenzi Wang, Symbolic Capital aims to provide a wide range of services to its portfolio companies through a unique internal data platform. The crypto-focused venture capital firm will be exclusively working on Web3 companies. This demonstrates venture capital's increasing interest in blockchain-powered internet.
A number of crypto industry participants, protocols, exchanges, and auditing firms were among the investors in the Symbolic fund. Among them were venture capitalists. The fund was also supported by family offices and institutions. This will result in checks ranging from $500,000 to $1 million per project. Symbolic's fund has already made three investments in blockchain-focused gaming startups. These include BlinkMoon, Planet Mojo and Community Gaming. These startups' initial funding has not been disclosed.
Nailwal says, "My core mission is to bring mass adoption to web3, and that mass adoption is only going to happen via apps. It’s not like I’m going to build a blockchain, and people will come and use the blockchain — nobody uses blockchain directly. They always use it via some app."
Symbolic Capital is heavily invested in Web3 projects or solutions that will further the decentralised internet. Around 50 percent of the staff at Symbolic Capital is dedicated to providing operational support to founders. Legal issues, product integrations, internal audits, networking with other founders, and go-to-market activities are all covered. The firm intends to focus on startups developing consumer-facing decentralised apps. It will also provide a data platform for scraping and analysing sources such as GitHub repositories and LinkedIn. This will provide founders with access to market trends as well as recruitment assistance.
The firm said in a public statement, "We’re one of the first VC firms led exclusively by web3 founders, allowing us to provide unparalleled support to the builders in our portfolio."
In 2017, Nailwal co-founded Polygon in India. Wang is a co-founder of Cere, a decentralised data cloud. They have invested together in over 40 companies, including Axie Infinity, YGG, Biconomy, and others. Wang was quoted saying, "It’s a builder’s time…There’s less distraction. We feel like this is a time to really help the next generation of founders."
He went on to say that they were still in the dial-up stage of Web3. He also stated that the company's goal is to empower founders to come in and build applications that bring more users into the Web3 spheres. Symbolic's announcement comes just a week after Shima Capital announced a $200 million crypto fund and CoinFund announced a $300 million investment fund.
The writer is the founder at yMedia. He ventured into crypto in 2013 and is an ETH maximalist. Twitter: @bhardwajshash
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