Sortium, a developer of Web3 entertainment technology, has raised $7.75 million in a seed round, with crypto hedge fund Arca among the investors. Web3 infrastructure advancements are widely seen as key to bringing more people and brands into the crypto industry.
The funding was revealed in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the details, including Arca's participation, were confirmed by Sortium CEO Marc Seal in an interview with CoinDesk. Seal didn’t specify who the other investors were, but said the group included other crypto-native firms.
Startups are raising capital despite an extended crypto bear market following a string of high-profile collapses, including that of multibillion-dollar crypto exchange FTX. Sortium’s SEC filing showed a $14 million target for the seed round, but the company said it decided not to pursue the full amount.
“We started raising [money] at that $14 million, and we had originally gotten offers that would have completed the round very shortly after we announced,” explained Seal. “We decided not to go that route and focus more on strategic partners and see what the landscape was turning into.”
AI meets blockchain
Sortium's roughly 50 employees include blockchain engineers, artificial intelligence engineers and a full game studio that can launch its own titles or help partners develop games.
“Sortium allows you to generate, tokenize and simulate,” said Seal. “You can generate 3D assets, regenerate consent with artificial intelligence and it will get automatically tokenized. That’s our Web3 blockchain layer.”
Sortium is focused on showcasing its technological framework to help potential partners and clients understand what generative artificial intelligence systems, blockchains and dynamic private economic systems can accomplish. The startup is also preparing to launch its first play-to-earn game. CosmoGene will let players create unique virtual genetic experiments generated from AI-backed synthetic DNA. The game learns and adapts to the player, which in turn grows the environment.
With respect to funding, Sortium is still considering accepting up to another $2 million from investors interested in the seed round. The company is also strategizing how and when to pursue a Series A fundraise.
The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by Bullish, a cryptocurrency exchange, which in turn is owned by Block.one, a firm with interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets including bitcoin and EOS. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary, and an editorial committee, chaired by a former editor-in-chief of The Wall Street Journal, is being formed to support journalistic integrity.
Learn more about Consensus 2024, CoinDesk's longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to consensus.coindesk.com to register and buy your pass now.