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The $100 million investment and grant fund has been launched to fund Web3 startups in South Korea, primarily those involved in DeFi and GameFi.
Solana Continues Expansion
The fund has been established through the efforts of both Solana Ventures (the VC arm of the Solana ecosystem) and the Solana Foundation (the non-profit arm of the ecosystem). The fund will be supporting the growth and development of the projects centering around non-fungible tokens (NFT), blockchain gaming, and decentralized finance (DeFi) in South Korea. One of the contributors to the fund will be the Solana community treasury, while another source is Solana Venture’s pool of capital.
The GM for Games at the Solana Foundation, Johnny B. Lee, has commented on the decision to expand into the South Korean market, saying,
“A big portion of Korea’s gaming industry is moving into web3. We want to be flexible; there’s a wide range of project sizes, team sizes, so some of [our investments] will be venture-sized checks…Free-to-play adoption probably took eight years, so if we say it’ll take four years for web3 games to be the dominant revenue model, I’m pretty comfortable with that.”
Solana Taking Over GameFi
Solana has been eyeing the GameFi market for a while, attempting to assert its position as a gaming-friendly blockchain. It has been consistently making investments in GameFi since last year. The first of its kind was the $100 gaming fund launched in partnership with crypto exchange FTX and Lightspeed Ventures in November 2021. The Solana team followed it up soon enough with another project - a $150 million investment in blockchain gaming in partnership with Griffin Gaming Partners and Forte. It continued its GameFi expansions in 2022 as well, with a $500,000 investment in the Southeast Asia market in partnership with YGG SEA.
The play-to-earn model of several games like Axie Infinity has been criticized in the past on the grounds of not being fun enough for players who only used it as a money-making platform. However, according to Lee, that would be changing soon as several “high quality and fun games” would be launching on Solana by the end of the year.
Helping Hand For Terra
The projects all need to be built on the Solana blockchain to be eligible for this funding. However, the fund is also supporting some select Terra-based projects to help out after its devastating crash last month. The Solana Foundation does not want the developers working on the Terra blockchain to suffer the consequences of the complete breakdown of the ecosystem. In fact, Lee has already pointed out that “the developers did nothing really wrong, but they’re left in the lurch.”
Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.