Big Whale Labs has raised a $3.8 million seed round. The investment follows a pre-seed round in October.
The Vancouver-based web3 startup secured the capital from M13 and Road, with participation from Slow Ventures, C2, Goodwater, Panache, NFR, and angel investors.
Big Whale Labs is using web3 technologies to reimagine what digital identity and the social graph could be by building a social protocol to facilitate pseudonymity through zero knowledge and crypto. For example, StreetCred allows people to interact as pseudonymous NFT identities with verified credentials and reputations attached to these NFTs all on the Ethereum blockchain.
“Open blockchains such as Ethereum are public ledgers,” explain founders Jason Kim and Nikita Kolmogorov. “There are tons of privacy tradeoffs associated with open blockchains.”
If someone knows your wallet address, they can see all of the transactions you have ever made, for example. Users are “giving away the kitchen sink in terms of data” to gain access, according to Big Whale Labs.
The startup cites several possible use cases for its technology, including social media network verification, work email, and school affiliation.
In addition to the funding announcement, the founders revealed that Big Whale Labs plans later this year to launch Dosu, a “pseudonymous social app powered by zk NFT badges you create with SealCred.”
“Think of this as sort of like TeamBlind meets Reddit meets Crypto,” says Kolmogorov.
The BC company plans to use the funding to accelerate product development.
“Big Whale Labs’ mission is to enhance human-to-human connection online to make social more safe, fun, secure, and free,” CEO Kim stated last year. “Our goal with Big Whale Labs is to enhance how web3 communities interact on web2 platforms and to also introduce new mechanisms that are completely native to web3 like owning fractional identities and pseudonymous but verified credentials.”
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