Earlier this year, we participated in the $7.5M Series A of Sky Mavis (the parent company of Axie Infinity), investing alongside other great investors such as Libertus, Collab+Currency, CMT, Blocktower, Animoca, Mark Cuban, and others. Since then, they have become one of the most exciting stories across all of video gaming and are the #1 traded NFT in the world at $2.3B in traded volume. For perspective, the next 4 are CryptoPunks ($1.4B), Art Blocks ($951M), NBA Top Shot ($690M) and Bored Ape Yacht Club ($532M).
When we heard the Sky Mavis team’s vision and saw the community they had cultivated since they initially launched in 2018, we agreed with their vision for play-to-earn and its intersection between gaming and crypto. Today, we are thrilled to continue backing them through our follow-on participation in their $152M Series B at a $3B pre-money valuation. This round was led by a16z with participation from Paradigm, Accel, and many other great investors.
This funding round is so much more than just building upon their flagship game in Axie Infinity. Sky Mavis wants to help build the foundation that future P2E games can leverage. They will be expanding support for the Ronin sidechain, rolling out free-to-play (F2P) gameplay, releasing their own decentralized exchange (DEX), and building out the processes for external developers to build their own experiences. We can’t wait for the community to see what’s in store.
Sky Mavis has proven that when you invest in the community, the community will give back through their support and passion. Axie Infinity has spearheaded an entirely new model within the video gaming ecosystem with play-to-earn and shared economics with the gaming community. We could not be happier to support the team in their mission to shake up our industry.
We are excited to announce our latest new investment in Echo3D, where we were excited to lead their $4M Seed round. Echo3D is a cloud platform for 3D/AR/VR that provides tools and network infrastructure to help developers and companies quickly build and deploy 3D apps, games, and content. We initially reached out to Alon (Echo3D’s CEO and co-founder) because we felt the growth in quality AR/VR content has outpaced the underlying required infrastructure.
We met the team in June and quickly realized they were building the infrastructure that 3D applications would be built on in the future through optimizing the end-user experience, enabling instantly accessible updates, and allowing ease of content updating and management.
We are extremely excited to partner with Alon, Koren, and Ben and honored to have gotten to lead their $4M Seed round with participation from Space Capital and Reimagine Ventures. The team at Echo3D are truly on a mission to build one of the most important technologies for 3D applications and this team is positioned perfectly to accomplish that goal.
Global investment banking firm, Drake Star Partners, released their quarterly global gaming industry report for Q3 (Global Gaming Industry Update - Sept 2021). This year to date, there have been 228 deals announced and/or closed investments (or $32B disclosed value) - this exceeds 2x the value of disclosed investments in 2020.
We are seeing a record breaking volume of private financing deals, unsurprisingly driven by NFT / Blockchain enthusiasm. With only 1.54M Unique Active Wallets (users can have more than one wallet) in use right now (754K of which are utilized in gaming and P2E), this trend should not slow down anytime soon.
This is an exciting time to be an active investor in gaming.