By Liam Frost
Huobi Group, the parent company of Seychelles-based crypto exchange Huobi Global, has launched a new $100 million venture capital fund that will focus on investing in early-stage blockchain and decentralized finance (DeFi) startups.
Per an announcement shared with Decrypt today, the company’s new subsidiary, dubbed Huobi Ventures and led by Huobi Group CFO Lily Zhang, will be aimed at “growing Huobi’s venture investment portfolio and supporting innovative blockchain projects through long-term investment strategies.”
“We have had separate teams focus on different investment strategies, but by bringing everyone together under a single entity, we can create a more cohesive strategy and continue to invest in and support the most innovative projects that are shaping the blockchain and DeFi spaces,” Zhang explained.
Huobi Ventures will focus on corporate mergers and acquisitions (M&A) as well as venture capital, the release added. While the M&A division plans to search for blockchain-related “strategic opportunities,” the VC outfit will concentrate on long-term investments in blockchain and DeFi projects.
Huobi’s $10 million NFT play
Huobi’s new venture arm will also establish a $10 million fund dedicated specifically to non-fungible tokens (NFTs). In the announcement, Zhan said these unique, non-interchangeable tokens “are the future of art and collectibles” and give creators “a new way to engage with fans and introduce blockchain to the mainstream audience.”
“While NFTs have already become a growing part of the internet culture, what we see in the market today is only a fraction of what’s actually possible with NFTs. As an immutable way to prove authenticity and ownership of digital files, we’ll see use cases increase across gaming, media, enterprise, and more in the near future,” Zhang added.
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Apart from NFT collectibles themselves, the new fund will also invest in related projects such as marketplaces, mining, and crypto gamification.
Considering the amount of money that’s flowing into NFTs, $10 million might not look like much. Just yesterday, for example, startup game developer Big Time Studios, which includes game industry veterans from Epic Games, Electronic Arts, and Riot Games, raised $21 million for an NFT-based game.