(Bloomberg) -- Crypto-focused Blockchain Capital has raised $580 million across two new funds, one of the biggest raises for the asset class this year and the largest for the venture firm in its 10-year history.
Blockchain Capital, which has an existing $2 billion in assets under management, will use the fresh capital to back crypto startups in areas including decentralized finance and gaming as well as infrastructure, general partner Kinjal Shah said in an interview with Bloomberg News.
One of the funds, which is called Fund VI, is dedicated to new and early-stage companies; the other, the Opportunity Fund, will be used for later-stage investments. Blockchain Capital confirmed that $380 million will be dedicated to the early-stage fund and $200 million will be used for the Opportunity Fund.
Blockchain Capital’s investors include Visa Inc. and PayPal Holdings Inc., as well as the Teacher Retirement System of Texas, which invested in Fund VI. Shah declined to disclose the terms of the raise.
San Francisco-based Blockchain Capital has previously invested in Worldcoin, crypto exchange Kraken and nonfungible token marketplace OpenSea.
Despite the steep downturn in NFT sales and prices, Shah said that are still opportunities in the category, citing the potential for the tokens to be used to put financial products or real estate contracts on the blockchain.
Read: Wall Street Spots Blockchain Opportunities as Crypto Stumbles
Shah declined to explain how much of the new capital would be dedicated to crypto token purchases. She said Blockchain Capital will continue to invest in tokens, despite legal debates over whether cryptocurrencies are considered securities.
While there are still crypto companies committed to staying in the US, “the regulatory environment is certainly challenging,” Shah said. “I would say that there’s perhaps more than normal sort of interest in moving abroad.”
Read: VC Firms on Hook for DeFi Sanctions Violations Under US Bill
Startups in the US are having to use multiple banking providers following the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank in March to avoid having all their money in one place, Shah said. Meanwhile, Europe and parts of Asia are becoming hotbeds of crypto innovation, she added.
Read: Why Hong Kong Wants to Be a Hub for the Crypto Sector: QuickTake
Spencer Bogart, a general partner at the VC firm, said in an interview with Bloomberg Television on Monday that the fundraise comes at a time when large investors in late-stage crypto startups, such as private equity firms and hedge funds, are pulling back.
“All of those capital allocators have walked off the playing field,” he said. “They’re no longer active in the industry.” He contrasted these traditional investors with crypto-focused firms, who he said are still committed to the asset class.
Watch: Blockchain Capital Raises $580M Across Two Funds (Video)
--With assistance from Caroline Hyde and Ed Ludlow.
(Updates with how the capital raised will be allocated in the third paragraph and adds quotes from BTV interview starting in 10th paragraph)
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