An ambitious new project from a pair of young founders is hoping to expand and decentralize data access for blockchains, and they just raised $2.8 million to do it.
KYVE – a stylized take on the second syllable of “archive” – has closed its second funding round led by Permanent Ventures and Hypersphere Ventures, and with contributions from Zee Prime and CMS Holdings. Arweave, Avalanche Foundation, Interchain Foundation, NEAR Foundation, Solana Foundation are among the others involved.
KYVE, which is currently in testnet, uses Arweave to store blockchain data whose veracity is verified by a network of node operators.
“The bigger picture is that KYVE is a tool for creating a fully decentralized data network, where everyone can access the data, get it in and query the data, and it’s all trustless,” said KYVE co-founder Fabian Riewe in an interview with CoinDesk.
While data storage and access might not seem exciting at first blush, Riewe described a use case where new Solana nodes could query KYVE from a “valid point,” allowing for more lightweight nodes that don’t need to have the blockchain’s full history. Running a Solana node carries a notably high hardware load, and this could lower memory requirements.
If the Solana Foundation were to provide this service, it would create a single point of failure, but KYVE’s network adds a decentralized layer of security.
This use case is already being tested out on Avalanche, per Riewe.
“We actually saw this happening on the Avalanche side,” said Riewe. “We have a lot of Avalanche data, and what the nodes do is they prune their local database and just say, ‘Well, if I ever have to serve this data, I’ll just request through KYVE and serve it through there.’”
Other use cases include price oracles, cross-chain data, cross-chain bridges, storing (and changing, depending on monitored external events) non-fungible token (NFT) metadata and “translating” data between Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) and non-EVM chains, allowing cross-blockchain events to trigger.
When trying to describe the business model, Riewe compared KYVE to an oil pipeline – but instead of crude oil, Kyve transports data.
“KYVE is a pipeline, transporting the oil from one place to someplace else, and people do crazy stuff with the oil – they make plastic, they make diesel, petrol, they build amazing things with it,” he said.
Per Reiwe, the team has grown to eight people, and the round focused on founders and potential integration partners, avoiding “capital-only” firms and working closely with investors to ensure eventual product-market fit.
While Riewe and co-founder John Letey are just 21 and 16, respectively, Riewe says the community of early users and testers have been supportive and respectful as the project works through growing pains and occasional data hiccups.
“They tell us all the time, ‘Hey, we’ve been in testnet before too. These things happen,’” he said.
The team currently has plans for a utility token that will allow users to upload data and pay validators for confirming data validity as well as participating in the project’s decentralized governance process. According to Riewe, the team is targeting a token launch by the middle of next year.
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