Injective launches $150M ecosystem fund to accelerate interoperable infrastructure and DeFi adoption – MastStatus

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Injective, a layer-1 blockchain focused on building financial applications, has launched a $150 million fund ecosystem initiative, the platform’s CEO and co-founder Eric Chen told MastStatus.

“We’ve seen a lot of ecosystem funds do different things in the past, but there isn’t really an established ecosystem fund for Injective and Cosmos as a whole,” Chen said. “We call it a venture consortium because that’s where they can get investment or direct institutions.”

Injective was incubated by Binance Labs in 2018 and later backed by Jump Crypto, Pantera Capital, and billionaire entrepreneur Mark Cuban. In the third quarter of 2022, it raised an institutional funding round from Brevan Howard and Jump. The ecosystem works with decentralized applications (dApps) such as Coinbase, Figment, Pyth, and Wormhole, to name a few.

The new ecosystem fund is backed by previous investors such as Pantera and Jump, as well as other web3 players including Kraken Ventures, Kucoin Ventures, Delphi Labs, Flow Traders, Gate Labs and IDG Capital. The $150 million was pooled capital from the consortium and will be deployed in “a few years,” Chen said.

The group aims to support projects that build on Injective or Cosmos blockchains in the interoperability, DeFi, commerce, proof-of-stake infrastructure and scalability solutions sectors, it said.

“It will start by supporting early stage projects and then move slowly from the beginning to later stages as the ecosystem as a whole grows,” added Chen. “With the launch of this consortium, we are going to kick off this ecosystem fund with a hackathon to bring in investors and lenders. In fact, this will also introduce many more opportunities for consortium members.”

The Injective Global Virtual Hackathon kicks off in March for a four-week online event with $1 million in prizes, grants and investments.

“It’s a pivotal time to step up and help people build,” Chen said. “In the case of Injective, there has been a huge increase in builders coming from other layer-1 networks, but more importantly [centralized finance] builders such as exchanges and trading firms committed to creating something truly decentralized.

In today’s market, there are many quality projects that are seeking support but are having more difficulty reaching investors, Chen noted. “They are still deploying and this consortium is a strong signal that they will support new projects and that their funds are actively participating in the ecosystem.”

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