Token management platform Magna closed a $15 million seed round at a $70 million valuation led by venture capital firms Tiger Küresel and Tusk Venture Partners, co-founder Bruno Faviero told CoinDesk.
Other participants in the round included Shima Capital, Circle Ventures, Solana Ventures, Polygon Ventures, Avalanche Labs and Galaxy Labs. Individual investors included ex-Coinbase executive Balaji Srinivasan, Messari’s Ryan Selkis and DJ Steve Aoki.
The company, co-founded by MIT and Y-Combinator alum Bruno Faviero, is building token distribution software that makes it easier for protocols, decentralized autonomous organizations (DAO) and crypto funds to send and receive tokens, a process that has so far lacked automation and has been prone to error.
“Crypto founders want their stakeholders to get their tokens on-time, correctly, and in a compliant way,” said Faviero, CEO of Magna. “We started Magna to make it easier to start and scale crypto companies, and this is one less thing they have to worry about.”
Faviero says basic infrastructure for Web3 projects – such as token management software – is still lacking compared to the tools available to Web2 technology companies. In Web3, tokens have become the new unit of ownership, and are transacted via blockchains and wallet addresses.
“Magna is solving a pain point that many founders and organizations face today when managing tokens for employees and various stakeholders,” said Jordan Nof, Managing Partner and Co-Founder at Tusk Venture Partners. “Token issuances can create a powerful incentive for stakeholders, but managing the process is still highly manual. Bruno and the team at Magna are creating a platform that will change the future of how companies plan, manage, and execute token distributions.”
Additionally, projects frequently use tokens to conduct airdrops, participate in governance and distribute as payment to investors, all of which requires more sophisticated, crypto-native tooling.
“At Shima, we have hundreds of portfolio companies and several have tried to build token distribution mechanisms in-house to no avail,” said Yida Gao, general partner at Shima Capital. “These tools should exist as a primitive and require battle-tested smart contract code, extensive security audits, and a usable interface to get right.”
UPDATE (Sept. 15, 2022 14:35 UTC) – Adds Polygon Ventures to list of investors in second paragraph.