Huobi Ventures, Republic Crypto Team Up to Fund Startups

The venture capital arm of the cryptocurrency exchange has committed $30 million to the project.

Oct 13, 2021 at 9:27 p.m. UTC
Updated Oct 14, 2021 at 7:07 p.m. UTC

Huobi Ventures, the venture capital arm of the popular Huobi crypto exchange, has formed a partnership with the crypto arm of Republic to launch a crypto “accelerator” to give startups exposure to global investors and equity.

The companies say the accelerator – which in this context refers to when financial firms help fund a startup to accelerate the startup’s growth – will help crypto firms launch digital assets, combining the advisory services and early-stage incubation of Republic’s crypto business with the capital and know-how of Huobi Ventures, including liquidity support and centralized exchange relations strategy. Huobi told CoinDesk the company has committed $30 million to the accelerator.

Projects that have already entered the accelerator include Mastercard-backed smart contract company SupraOracles and TikTok rival Chingari.

“Liquidity support from the centralized exchange has always been seen as a critical milestone for crypto startups,” Unica Yin, investment director of Huobi Ventures, said in a statement. “Through the collaboration with Republic from an accelerator perspective, we envision that this would provide the comprehensive support to the project throughout the entirety of its life cycle, thus elevating product value in applicable scenarios rather than merely to look for quick returns in investment.”

The global accelerator launches as China continues its crackdown on the crypto industry. Last month, Huobi Global said it would stop serving existing China-based users by the end of the year after the People’s Bank of China declared that virtual currency businesses were illegal and banned overseas exchanges from serving users in the region.

Huobi Ventures has launched three funds to date, including one for blockchain technology, one for the Huobi Eco Chain (HECO) public blockchain and one for non-fungible tokens.

Meanwhile, Republic’s fund adviser arm just launched a $60 million seed fund, its first and flagship fund, and has already deployed about $11 to $12 million of that money.

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