Pear VC’s Anand Iyer solos with new $200 million fund for crypto developer tools TechCrunch

Engineers are the foundation of any technology product, and blockchain is no exception. As the race between different chains heats up, the community of loyalists is trying to attract developers to the blockchain of their choice in the hope that doing so will spur growth. And competition aside, without adequate infrastructure and tools, the big ideas and promises of web3 don’t have any angle to see the light of day.

That’s why Anand Iyer, who used to work at Microsoft as a “developer evangelist” trying to encourage engineers to build on the company’s platform, is looking to do the same for the money. electronics – this time, as an investor. Iyer, a serial entrepreneur with two successful exits, spent much of last year cultivating his interest in web3 as a visiting partner at Pear VC and as a instructors are teaching DeFi courses to more than 2,000 students.

Now, the blockchain enthusiast who started trading Bitcoin in 2013 is joining the ranks of a growing group of venture-funded solo GPs built on their own name and reputation. Iyer raised $20 million in what he said was an oversubscription round for his first fund, Canonical Capital, he told TechCrunch. Fundraising participants include several family offices and individuals from the VC and tech communities, including Shan Aggarwal of Coinbase Ventures, Marc Andreessen of a16z and Chris Dixon, Judith Elsea, Lux Capital, Mar Hershenson , Haseeb Qureshi from Dragonfly Capital, Dan Romero Semil Shah, Amy Wu from FTX Ventures and Bilal Zuberi, among others, the company said.

Iyer said Canonical has made 16 investments in seed and pre-seed startups across the developer infrastructure landscape. Its portfolio includes the Solana-based NFT marketplace FormFunctionlow-code multi-chain dApp tool Thirdweband start web3 messaging Notifi. The company expects to make 40 to 50 investments in its first fund, writing checks for $250,000 to $500,000, it said.

Canonical Crypto Market Map of Web Infrastructure Opportunities3

Canonical Crypto’s market map of different segments in the landscape of web developer infrastructure3 Image credits: Regulatory Cryptocurrencies

Iyer sees the relatively small size of his fund as a key differentiating factor in the competitive space. Traditional venture firms like Sequoia, a16z, and Silver Lake have all made recent forays into web3 developer infrastructure startups.

“I don’t want this to be a fund that is too big, or bigger than 20 million, because I can go into many rounds. I can also invest in very, very early stages, so I’m not trying to compete for a certain percentage of ownership. I can write relatively small checks and still be a meaningful part of the entrepreneurial journey early on,” says Iyer.

While developer infrastructure is a hot space for venture capitalists, Iyer said that he still sees it as an untapped area in crypto.

“If you look at DeFi or dApp apps today, it feels like they were built by early adopters for early adopters,” Iyer said, adding that to scale reach, crypto needs more people producing infrastructure tools.

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