Crypto startup Aptos raises $200M in hope to revive Diem blockchain

Diem was a cryptocurrency dream project by Meta to create a highly accessible cross-border payment system. However, the firm was unable to comply with regulatory scrutiny.

Crypto startup Aptos raises $200M in hope to revive Diem blockchain

Wednesday March 16, 2022,

2 min Read

Aptos on Tuesday announced that it has raised $200 million. Founded by former Meta employees who worked on Diem, Meta Platform Inc’s abandoned digital currency project, Aptos says it aims to "create universal and fair access to decentralized assets for billions of people".

The round was led by venture fund a16z crypto with participation from Multicoin Capital, Katie Haun, Three Arrows Capital, ParaFi Capital, Tiger Global, and others.

Palo Alto-based Aptos employs around 25 people. Chief executive officer MO Sheikh explained to Bloomberg Quint why he and co-founder Avery Ching decided to launch the startup, “We did not feel right that something like this couldn’t make its way to market despite all the work that we had done.”

"Over the past months we’ve talked with hundreds of developers, brands, and companies about their projects; there’s a lot to be excited about. They’re building next-gen social media platforms, rich NFT experiences, Web3 games, creator-first media and entertainment businesses, cheap and secure payments, DeFi-integrated fintech products, and so much more," Sheikh wrote in a blog post.

Aptos says it has partnered with Mysten Labs, in developing a new blockchain. The startup has partnered with a number of Web3 ecosystem companies, including cryptocurrency exchanges Binance and Coinbase, and NFT platform Rarible.

Since the year 2019, Meta Inc has been attempting to introduce a stablecoin and it initially proposed its first digital currency, dubbed Libra, which failed to take off. After a series of unsuccessful attempts to introduce Libra, Meta rebranded their dream project and renamed it Diem.

This isn't the first time that a name associated with the initial Meta Inc-led project has altered. In the year 2021, Meta Inc rebranded its Calibra wallet to Novi. With the rebranding of Diem, Meta Inc aims to revive back its dream project.