VC Funding in Crypto Startups Grew by 40.3% in Q1'24 To $2.4 Bn

Venture capital funding in the cryptocurrency sector has seen a significant increase, reaching $2.4 billion in the first quarter of 2024. This marks a 40.3% rise from the previous quarter, as reported by Pitchbook. The growth in funding is attributed to several factors, including the anticipation of lower interest rates and the introduction of the first U.S. bitcoin spot ETF, which has heightened investor interest.

The funding was distributed across 518 deals, and it's interesting to note that this surge comes at a time when global venture capital investments have declined to a near five-year low. Despite economic concerns and the shutdown of key market players, the landmark U.S. regulatory approval of spot bitcoin ETFs offered by industry giants like BlackRock and Fidelity has bolstered the legitimacy of the asset class. This development helped propel bitcoin to a record high of $73,803 in March.

Startups focusing on building infrastructure for crypto and blockchain technology were at the forefront of receiving funding during this period. The largest deal reported was by the decentralized cloud platform Together AI, which raised $106 million in an early-stage round led by Salesforce Ventures, valuing the company at $1.1 billion.

The competitive nature of investment rounds, especially at early stages, and the higher valuations they are commanding compared to late-stage deals, are notable trends in the current venture capital landscape for crypto startups. While exits remain low, there is an expectation for mergers to increase later in the year, particularly among crypto exchanges, custodians, and infrastructure providers as the market continues to mature.

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