DeFi project 1Inch network raises $175 million in a Series B financing round backed by a host of institutional investors.
Decentralized cryptocurrency exchange (DEX) aggregator 1inch has announced a closure of a $175 million Series B funding round led by Amber Group.
The raise also saw the participation of about 50 other investors, including Jane Street, VanEck, Fenbushi Capital, Alameda Research, Celsius, Nexo, Tribe Capital, and Gemini Frontier Fund, among others.
1inch is a decentralized finance (DeFi) aggregator designed to help users discover the best trade prices for tokens. Instead of swapping tokens from a single liquidity pool, the project scans various pools and suggests the most efficient way to trade tokens.
The team said that the initial investment target was set at $70 million, however, due to the increased demand from the backers, a decision was made to increase it to $175 million.
“The next $1 trillion of assets entering DeFi will come from institutions rather than retail users, and 1inch would like to facilitate entry for them,” said Sergej Kunz, co-founder of the 1inch Network. “We have already started work in that direction by attracting some key players from the traditional finance markets, and this collaboration will only accelerate over the next few years.”
In August 2020, the project secured a $2.8 million funding round led by Binance Labs, followed by a $12 million financing led by Pantera Capital later that year.
Among several planned initiatives, the project intends to use the fresh funding to build 1inch Pro, a secure and scalable platform that will provide institutional investors in Europe and the U.S. with an entry point to digital assets in the DeFi sector.
“The mission is to provide access for institutions to a separate and permissioned 1inch Pro service that will deploy the compliance protocol designed to meet both enterprise-grade requirements for accessing DeFi and local laws and regulations where it operates,” Kunz told Decrypt.
The raised funds will also be spent on building new protocols and expanding the utility of the 1INCH governance token.
“In Q1 2022, we plan to deliver a protocol which will use 1INCH as an insurance token. Users can stake and cover the protocol from losses by taking the risks and earning from the protocol’s fees,” explained Kunz.
1inch opts for DAO
Currently, the project is in the midst of a transition to 1inch DAO, an initiative aimed at decentralizing the network via a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) mechanism.
The end goal is to make both the network’s protocols and the project’s native token, fully decentralized, owned, and governed by the DAO.
According to the team, the addition of new participants will lead to further decentralization of the 1inch DAO, “making it more democratic by allowing everyone’s vote to matter.”
Last but not the least, over the next few years 1inch intends to at least double its team, which currently unites more than 70 people around the world.
About Amber Group
Amber Group is a leading global cryptocurrency finance service provider operating around the world and around the clock with a presence in Hong Kong, Taipei, Seoul, and Vancouver. Founded in 2017, Amber Group services over 800 institutional clients and has cumulatively traded over $800 billion across 100+ electronic exchanges, with over $4 billion in assets under management. In 2021, Amber Group raised $100 million in Series B funding and became the latest FinTech unicorn valued at over $1 billion.
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