Crypto startup raises $115m; Beijing launches Web3 white paper

Tools For Humanity, a technology company co-founded by Sam Altman of OpenAI, has raised $115 million in a Series C round headed by Blockchain Capital. A16z Crypto, Bain Capital Crypto, and Distributed Global are just a few of the new and returning investors who contributed to the round.

The San Francisco-based business is creating beta-stage hardware to back the ETH-based token Worldcoin. By scanning eyes with a five-pound chromatic sphere ‘The Orb’, the World ID platform hopes to provide distinct digital personas for people based on blockchain technology.

Many believe that this could be a huge growth, especially for fans of the online crypto casino market. Despite its growing success, the company has sparked debate about AI, data privacy, and other related topics. Scanning people’s eyes to build an online profile and how that data could be used has prompted privacy and data issues.

The issue has sparked debate due to its decentralised structure and hopes to create unique digital personas. ‘It’s crucial that people protect their privacy while also forming their humanity as the world enters the AI age. By doing so, we can level the playing field for the financial gains that AI is expected to bring about for all’, Alex Blania, CEO and co-founder of Tools for Humanity, said to address the growing concerns.

However, prior reports said that the company was seeking funding at a $3 billion valuation. Even though it’s possible for Tools For Humanity to successfully raise funds, the same cannot be said for the vast majority of crypto and Web3 ventures.

According to Crunchbase, venture capital funding for Web3 businesses dropped by 82% in the first quarter of 2023, from $9.1 billion in Q1 2022 to barely $1.7 billion. This is the lowest quarterly financing level since the fourth quarter of 2020 when few had heard about Web3 and only $1.1 billion was invested.

Beijing launches Web3 white paper

The Beijing Municipal Science and Technology Commission unveiled the Web3 Innovation and Development White Paper at the Zhongguancun Forum. The document is said to acknowledge Web3 technology as an expected trend for the future and growth of the internet industry.

The commission seeks to allocate a minimum of 100 million yuan ($14 million) annually until 2025 with the aim of developing Beijing as a prominent worldwide innovation hub for the digital economy. The financing was announced by Yang Hongfu, director of the Zhongguancun Chaoyang Park management committee. He also emphasised Zhongguancun’s reputation as China’s Silicon Valley.

The white paper highlights Beijing’s will to increase legal backing and speed technology breakthroughs to encourage the rise of the Web3 industry. On the other hand, Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao called the June 1st adoption of Hong Kong’s crypto rules ‘noteworthy’, praising the white paper’s release timing.

As a new licensing structure for crypto platforms will take effect on June 1st, 2023, the Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong also unveiled a new law for the crypto industry. Despite China’s restriction on crypto use in 2021, the country is deemed warming up to the industry with the publishing of the Web3 white paper.

In May 2023, the Bitcoin (BTC) logo and a BTC ATM in Hong Kong were featured heavily in a segment on digital assets that aired on China Central Television. Zhao, from Binance, noted that media attention has been linked with market growth.

With Hong Kong slowly opening its doors to the world of crypto, many believe that this will help the online crypto casino market grow more in the country. People expect that this will lead to more revenue for both crypto casino fans and the Hong Kong government.

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