SoftBank-Naver Joint Enterprise’s NFT Unit Raises $140 Million From Peter Thiel-Backed Personal Fairness Agency

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Line Subsequent, the South Korea-based NFT unit of a three way partnership between SoftBank and Naver, has secured $140 million from a consortium led by Crescendo Fairness Companions, even because the hype across the digital collectibles has light.

The cash raised marks this 12 months’s largest blockchain and Web3 funding in Asia, Line Subsequent stated in an announcement on Wednesday. The corporate stated it is going to use the recent funds to broaden its world enterprise and develop new choices, which embrace launching a world NFT market, introducing a digital avatar social app and creating extra Web3 video games.

“It’s vital that we have been capable of safe this funding within the context of a globally contracting funding atmosphere,” stated Youngsu Ko, CEO of Line Subsequent, within the assertion. “We plan to make use of this chance to additional popularize Web3 and develop a brand new service ecosystem the place customers personal the worth of their digital items.”

Seoul-based Crescendo Fairness Companions, which stated it has greater than $1.4 billion of property beneath administration, is backed by billionaire Peter Thiel. Launched in 2012, its different investments embrace semiconductor tools producer Hanmi Semiconductor, whose CEO Kwak Dong-shin became a billionaire in July as buyers seemed for the subsequent beneficiary of the AI frenzy, and Medipost, a Korean biotech based by Forbes Asia Energy Businesswomen honoree Yang Yoon-sun.

Established in 2021, when NFTs exploded in recognition, Line Subsequent is owned by LY Corp., which is the results of a merger in October between Z Holdings and its wholly-owned subsidiaries, together with Line Corp., the operator of in style messaging app Line. LY Corp. itself is a subsidiary of A Holdings, a three way partnership established in 2021 between billionaire Masayoshi Son’s know-how funding big SoftBank and billionaire Lee Hae-jin’s Korean web big Naver.

Line Subsequent raised about $10 million in July 2022 from buyers together with SoftBank, Naver, Korean billionaire Chung Yong-jin’s retail big Shinsegae, in addition to CJ ENM, the leisure unit of Korean billionaire Lee Jay-hyun’s conglomerate CJ Group.

The frenzy of NFTs, during which its advocates imagine might be a useful method of proving the authenticity of digital property, nevertheless, didn’t final lengthy. Month-to-month buying and selling quantity for these digital artwork and collectibles recorded on blockchains has tumbled 94% between January 2022 and November 2023, in response to knowledge from blockchain analytics agency Dappradar. An index by knowledge agency Nansen that tracks the market cap of the highest 10 NFTs has plunged 72% from its peak in February 2022 as of Tuesday.

Regardless that the NFT bubble has burst, Line Subsequent has been pushing ahead new digital asset-related tasks. Over the previous 12 months, the corporate has arrange a NFT platform that includes digital collectibles of Ok-pop stars and has launched a number of Web3 video games. Line Subsequent claimed that its choices have amassed 5.5 million customers with greater than 470,000 cumulative transactions over the previous 12 months.

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