The venture capitalists and hedge funds competing to back crypto startups are increasingly facing a third set of rivals: other startups.
In just the past year, at least eight highly valued crypto startups—ranging from crypto exchange Gemini to peer-to-peer payments startup Circle—have launched venture capital arms to invest in other crypto startups. In fact, of the top 25 most valuable crypto companies, 20 have made at least one investment in a startup, and 15 of those have launched VC arms or are doing so, according to The Information’s reporting and analysis of data from PitchBook.
Several of the crypto companies with newly minted VC arms, such as OpenSea, Solana Labs and FTX, were founded in the past few years. Flush with cash, often derived from their own fundraising as well as a surge in cryptocurrency trading and related activities, these startups could make a significant dent in crypto investing. Together, the 20 startups inking VC deals have already made at least 840 investments and have more than $10 billion available to spend, according to our analysis. The table below shows the most active VC arms.