Funding wrap: GLIF raises $4.5M to address capital inefficiency in file storage

Plus, Tether funds a crypto payments app

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This week saw a decrease in crypto fundraising activity as the digital asset sector adjusts to its new reality following the approval of multiple spot bitcoin ETFs.

Multicoin Capital led on a $4.5 round in GLIF for what it calls the “foundational DeFi primitive” of decentralized storage provider Filecoin. It’s a unique application of liquid staking — making the storage of files more capital efficient.

Filecoin facilitates a market for providing and using storage, where would-be data storers pay data providers in its FIL token. Data providers also earn FIL for validating and adding data to the Filecoin blockchain.

Read more: Australian cardiac institute ditches cloud storage in favor of Filecoin

Big Brain Holdings, a GLIF investor, highlights a significant issue: storage providers might see a limited demand for their FIL tokens, which can reduce operational efficiency. GLIF lets FIL holders deposit the tokens into a pool in exchange for iFIL, a liquid staking token. This token can be traded on secondary markets or utilized within other DeFi protocols.

In this sense, GLIF can play the same role Lido plays for Ethereum and Jito plays for Solana, Multicoin Capital managing partner Kyle Samani wrote — but for a file storage protocol.

Read more: Did Lido fly too close to the sun? Inside the centralization debate

While this particular usage of DeFi primitives isn’t yet wildly popular, GLIF’s total value locked (TVL) was over $150 million on Friday, up 15% in the past week, according to DeFiLlama. The site lists 11 different liquid staking protocols built on Filecoin.

“If you showed me today’s headlines 3 years ago I wouldn’t have believed you. I feel incredibly thankful and blessed to get to work with the folks behind GLIF, and rest assured, knowing that the news today is just the beginning,” GLIF CEO Jon Schwarz said.

Analog seeks to enhance blockchain interoperability following $16M raise

Analog, a Web3 platform focused on omni-chain solutions, has raised $16 million to tackle the challenge of blockchain interoperability. The round attracted notable investors such as Balaji Srinivasan, Mike Novogratz’s Samara Asset Group, Tribe Capital and NEAR.

Blockchains traditionally operate in silos, each functioning on its own unique protocol and governance model. This isolation means that blockchains cannot natively communicate or share information with one another. 

This limitation has led to the development of various bridging and wrapping solutions, which, while functional, often involve complex, multi-step processes that can introduce security vulnerabilities, inefficiencies, and high costs.

Analog aims to simplify this with its Timechain, a Rust-based blockchain designed for validating and relaying messages across different networks, facilitating seamless interaction without intermediaries. Additionally, Analog’s upcoming SDK for message passing looks to empower developers to create applications that integrate multiple blockchains’ strengths, streamlining the development of cross-chain functionalities.

Tether leads $25M Series A for crypto payments app

The investing arm of stablecoin issuer Tether led a round in Oobit, an app facilitating tap-and-pay for crypto payments. The round also drew participation from CMCC Global’s Titan Fund, 468 Capital, and Solana co-founder Anatoly Yakovenko.

Using Oobit’s app, users can pay with crypto at any merchant that uses the popular tap-and-pay payment flow. The platform currently supports payments for the “top ten” cryptos, including bitcoin, ether, and tether, according to Oobit’s website.

Venture activity is somewhat rare for Tether, although the stablecoin giant did make an investment in Georgian crypto payments platform CityPay.io last year.

Other notable fundraises

  • Polychain led a $6.5 million round in “universal yield marketplace” Superform.
  • DApp development platform Flood raised $5.2 million in a round co-led by Bain Capital Crypto and Archetype.
  • Bitcoin DeFi platform Omega came out of stealth and announced a $6 million raise.

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