DeFi Data Shop Nansen Makes First VC Investment in Gaming Analytics Firm ZeroDrop

Following a $75 million funding round of its own, it’s the first time Nansen has invested in an outside firm.

Apr 21, 2022 at 1:00 p.m. UTC
Updated Apr 21, 2022 at 3:12 p.m. UTC

Eli is a news reporter for CoinDesk. He holds ETH, SOL and AVAX.

On-chain data platform Nansen is dipping its toes into the blockchain gaming waters, leading a $1.27 million seed round for Web 3 gaming startup ZeroDrop.

It’s the first time Nansen has invested in an outside firm. Mechanism Capital, Mixmob and angel investors also joined the funding round.

ZeroDrop said in a press release Thursday it will use the funding for “technology development and client acquisition,” providing analytics tools for up-and-coming GameFi and non-fungible token (NFT) projects.

ZeroDrop aggregates in-game data and wallet analytics indexed by Nansen that can be used for targeted engagement campaigns, a largely untapped facet of an industry that has seen hundreds of millions of dollars in investment in the last year.

ZeroDrop is led by gaming veterans from the old guard of Web 2, including CEO Winston Ng, who previously worked for powerhouse publishers Electronic Arts (EA) and Epic Games before arriving at ZeroDrop.

“We have done this with EA and Epic games in the past where we take the game analytics, even web analytics, and combine them into what’s called cohort analysis. It’s the same idea with wallet data,” Ng told CoinDesk in an interview. “I had written six or seven pages on this, and when I sent it to [Nansen CEO Alex Svanevik], 20 minutes into the call he said he’d take the whole seed round.”

The investment comes as Nansen continues ramping up operations of its own. Since raising $75 million in December, the platform’s analytics tooling is now compatible with seven different blockchains, including Terra and most recently Solana.

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Eli is a news reporter for CoinDesk. He holds ETH, SOL and AVAX.

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Eli is a news reporter for CoinDesk. He holds ETH, SOL and AVAX.

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