Venture capitalists investing in consumer startups are writing more checks for crypto companies than ever before. The deals underscore how blockchain technology is reshaping industries like gaming and e-commerce, pushing long-standing consumer investors to remake themselves as crypto backers.
Investors have poured $3.7 billion into cryptocurrency-based gaming, commerce and shopping startups this year, including non-fungible token marketplace OpenSea and Sky Mavis, developer of the popular blockchain-based game Axie Infinity. That’s up 26 times from all of last year, according to an analysis of Crunchbase data by The Information. The growth outpaced that of venture-backed crypto investments overall, which have risen more than five times over the same period, to $23.7 billion. Investments in consumer crypto startups are even higher with the inclusion of financial firms such as crypto exchange FTX, which services both retail and institutional customers.