A16z State of Crypto: “It is still early days for web3”

Andreessen Horowitz (a16z), a prominent venture capital firm investing heavily in the web3 sector, has published its first “State of Crypto” report exploring current trends in the market.

The overarching takeaway from the report is that web3 and the crypto market develop in cycles.

As prices climb, interest in the sector grows to the point where it can no longer be sustained. Following a (usually steep) falloff in prices, innovators develop new projects that revive...

Axie Infinity network loses £468m in largest ever DeFi hack

$30 million Ether theft

Axie Infinity, one of the biggest success stories in the world of blockchain-based gaming, has become the victim of the largest decentralised finance (DeFi) hack in history.

The Pokémon-style NFT battler saw $615 million (£468m) stolen from its Ronin Network – the Ethereum sidechain created to run the game’s transactions – on March 23.

It took a user being unable to withdraw 5,000 ether (£12m) on March 29 for Ronin to realise that 173,600 ether (£448m) and 25.5...

LUNA flips Ethereum for staked value after bullish recovery

Stake

Terra’s native token, LUNA, has flipped Ethereum to become the second-largest blockchain network in terms of staked value.

LUNA captures value for Terra’s stablecoin, UST, which functions as part of a network of decentralised finance protocols.

The coin has increased in value ten-fold over the past year as the popularity of the Terra network continues to grow, holding the position of seventh largest crypto by market cap as of March 7.

With 226,408 stakers...

Slope Finance rakes in £6m Series A for cross-chain Solana wallet

Slope

Slope Finance, a decentralised exchange and wallet based on the Solana network, has raised $8 million (£6m) in Series A funding.

The round was led by Solana Ventures and Jump Crypto, with further support from Circle, Huobi, Sequoia China, Genesis Trading, CMS Holdings, Spark Digital, and more.

Following on from a successful seed round in August last year, the start-up has raised $10.3 million (£7.8m) overall.

With cross-platform functionality, the wallet...

Wormhole bridge suffers £235m loss to second biggest DeFi exploit ever

Wormhole

Wormhole, a cross-chain token bridge between Solana and other blockchains, has been hacked for £235 million in the second largest DeFi hack to date.

A token bridge is a DeFi protocol that allows users to send and receive crypto between blockchains without the need for a centralised exchange. Wormhole is one of the biggest bridges on the Solana network and is a key component of its ecosystem.

The exploit saw 120,000 Ether transacted from Wormhole to a private wallet...

Feature: Behind the record sales, the NFT space is evolving

As the cryptocurrency market tanks more than £1 trillion from its November all-time high of £2.2 trillion, the NFT world shows no signs of slowing down.

In fact, the most widely used NFT marketplace, OpenSea, had a monthly trading volume of £3.5 billion in January, well surpassing its previous trading record of £2.5 billion in August 2021.

What’s more, the market is seeing major structural changes thanks to the launch of LooksRare, a decentralised NFT...

MoonPay: the ‘PayPal for crypto’ raises $555m in first ever funding round

To the Moon

MoonPay, a start-up that lets users buy cryptocurrency through conventional payment methods like credit cards, has raised just over half a billion dollars in its first ever funding round.

The whopping $555 million (£414.7m) comes off the back of record funding for blockchain start-ups this year. Just last week, the Winklevoss twins’ crypto exchange Gemini raised $400 million whilst Ethereum co-founder Joseph Lubin’s ConsenSys landed $200 million.

Led by Tiger Global...

ConsenSys raises $200m from HSBC and Third Point to fund Web3 vision

Fox - MetaMask / ConsenSys

ConsenSys, a leading Ethereum software company, has raised $200 million (£149m) from investors including HSBC and US hedge fund Third Point, bringing its valuation to $3.2 billion (£2.38bn).

The New York-based start-up provides a whole host of products and services for the decentralised Web3 ecosystem, most notably the app and web browser extension MetaMask.

MetaMask allows users to hold, send, and manage digital assets in a flexible wallet that can connect with other...

Gemini raises $400m as Winklevoss twins gear up metaverse plans

Gemini

Gemini, the New York-based cryptocurrency exchange, has raised $400 million (£298m) through growth equity financing led by Morgan Creek Digital.

This is the first time the company has received external financing from other companies, with private equity firm 10T, blockchain investor ParaFi, and even the Commonwealth Bank of Australia getting involved.

Gemini, which was launched by Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss in 2015, now sits at a $7.1 billion (£5.28bn)...

Michael Jackson, Concordium: Bringing blockchain to traditional finance

Michael Jackson

“We’re trying to shoehorn permissionless technology into extremely permissioned environments,” reveals Michael Jackson, advisor to Concordium and former COO of Skype.

Jackson’s take is a breath of fresh air in a blockchain industry that has become bogged down in use cases that are struggling to find their feet. For years, the ideas of supply chain ledger technologies and pharmaceutical blockchains have sat stagnant in the water waiting to be realised.

As the...