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CyberConnect raises $15 million Series A to get data back into the hands of users TechCrunch


One of the promises of web3 entrepreneurs is to put data back into the hands of its owners through decentralization. Singapore-based CyberConnect is one of the few blockchain startups working to realize this vision, and it recently closed a Series A funding round totaling $15 million.

The lead co-investor of this round was Animoca Brands, a Hong Kong-based company that in recent years has risen from a game development shoddy to a web3 investment company. The other co-investor is Sky9 Capital, a Shanghai-based venture capital firm founded by Ron Cao, who is known for helping Lightspeed Venture Partners set up shop in China at the time. there.

“In web2, the companies with the largest social networks own the social graph of their users and build walls around them to stave off competition and promote corporate interests,” CEO and CyberConnect co-founder Wilson Wei.

As a result, Wei and his team are building a social graph “protocol”, the underlying rules that allow data to be shared between computers, for applications and in the case of web3, there is no centralized agent like Facebook. The end goal is for users to be able to move across web3 platforms with their followers and followers.

The application experience provided by CyberConnect should look like this: Users connect their crypto wallet – which has become a common gateway for any web3 application – with a social platform, on which they will are showing all their available connections. They will receive suggested user addresses to follow, based on CyberConnect’s indexing. When they track someone, that piece of information is added to CyberConnect’s network and becomes “mobile and autonomous”.

To date, CyberConnect has supported 23 projects including Project Galaxy and Mask Network, reaching a total of 710,000 users.

Other companies are building similar infrastructure to allow trackers interoperability, such as Lens, which is operated by Aave, a blockchain-powered decentralized lending protocol. Capital.

Wei told TechCrunch, CyberConnect’s solution consists of two components. Similar to Lens, it provides a software development kit (SDK), a piece of software for developers to create custom applications that allow end users to manage their social graphs and “social data networks” aggregate user behavior in web3, such as which tokens and NFTs they purchased.

Instead of using smart contracts like Lens, CyberConnect’s SDK is built on top of the InterPlanetary File System (IPFS), a peer-to-peer data sharing and storage network, and Ceramic, a data management network that can change without a centralized server, which Wei claims is more of an “economical and gas-saving solution.” Smart contracts are computer programs that execute automatically according to the terms of the contract and are subject to “gas fees,” payments made by users to compensate for the computing power required to process the contract. handle transactions.

“Smart contract-based protocols are creating value from scarce commodities while any data stored on-chain costs a hefty gas fee. There are only 10,000 NFTs in a collection and a limited number of bitcoins,” explained Wei.

“In contrast, the social context welcomes the abundance of data. There are only more and more new users, new connections and new content, and that data will be dynamic in nature and need constant updating. “

CyberConnect plans to generate revenue through the social data network, which includes different participants such as data contributors, indexers and referrers, managers and users. The network will be permissionless, meaning anyone can join, and that includes incentive mechanisms around query fees, according to Wei.

The startup, headquartered in Palo Alto, operates with a team of 27 people across the US, China, Canada and Europe.

Several venture capital firms, including Dragonflyrecently warned web3 startups to prepare for a cooling industry after the the recent crypto market crash and broader macroeconomic transactions. Wei is undeterred, saying that “the bear market is a great time for us to focus on building.”

“As a serial business team, with over seven years in social, Web3 and blockchain, previous experiences have taught us that it is important to keep building during a downturn,” he said. speak. “Projects that are truly visionary and create value will also easily be properly recognized as the noise will fade along with the market hype.”



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