cv vc Top 50 Report
CV VC Top 50 Report H1/2020
Broad growth fueled by Protocols and Financial Applications
Crypto Valley has further matured and added substance in the first half of 2020. Despite challenging circumstances because of COVID-19, the number of firms in Crypto Valley has increased to 919, and employment reached over 4700 in Switzerland and Liechtenstein.
Growth and funding have been driven across all areas, including protocols, financial services, and other applications. The big story has been the funding of companies by investors. The flows of money from VCs and investors are confirming the view that the clear regulatory framework will enable companies to execute on their business plans and become very valuable. As such, Crypto Valley’s first non-protocol layer unicorn may not be too far away.
Companies which raised substantial amounts include: Bitcoin Suisse AG ($48M), 4ART Technologies AG ($45M), METACO SA ($20M), Crypto Finance AG ($14M), Near Protocol ($12.1M), Taurus Group SA (undisclosed amount), Sygnum Bank AG (undisclosed amount in second round).
Financial services continue to push ahead with a broader adoption of cryptocurrencies and DLT infrastructure (storage, settlement), as evidenced by a number of successful funding rounds among Switzerland’s main crypto players and the work of established players such as InCore Bank AG to provide key infrastructure to other banks.
The valuation of protocols that count Crypto Valley as their home has increased significantly. All 6 Unicorns are protocol layer projects of which the listed ones saw their network value increase significantly. The markets are rewarding higher degrees of decentralization, technical milestone achievements, well-performing testnets and mainnets with increased valuations.
Outside of financial services, the protection of intellectual property and the tracking of IP transactions is attracting large investments and valuations. 4ARTechnologies AG, which provides application infrastructure for the art market, has raised $45M at a valuation of $250M. In addition, its utility coin for use in its ecosystem has an implied valuation of $250M. Utopia Music AG, which is tracking the use of music, is nearing a triple-digit valuation as it is engaging in pilot projects with large royalty collection agencies.
CV VC’s research reveals eight crypto hotspots in Crypto Valley: Zug, Zurich, Liechtenstein, Geneva, Ticino, Neuchatel, Vaud, Lucerne and Bern. The largest number of companies is in Zug with 439, as it remains the heart of Crypto Valley.
The regulatory framework in Switzerland keeps evolving rapidly and its regulatory clarity is now being enhanced with significant functionalities for digital assets, including securities. Switzerland opted to modify a number of existing laws, introducing changes only where necessary. The result is the world’s leading regulatory framework and legal basis for the issuance, trading, and ownership of digital assets, including securities. The DLT Act is expected to go into effect in the first quarter of 2021.
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Narwal - Blockchain PR
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Manager I Team Leader External Communications, PwC
Ecosystem & Incubation Manager, CV Labs