Variant, a crypto investment firm founded by Andreessen Horowitz veterans, has raised $450 million for a new umbrella fund split across a $150 million seed purse for Web3 projects and a $300 million opportunities vehicle that will “double-down on projects with demonstrated traction in our portfolio,” according to a website post published Thursday.
Variant has started the fund, its third, during a bear market that saw venture capital investments in crypto drop 26% year over year in the first half of 2022. Investments slumped to $9.3 billion from a record $12.5 billion in the year-earlier period, according to Crunchbase data.
Investment theses for Variant Fund III include financial empowerment through decentralized finance (DeFi), blockchain computing, Web3 consumer applications and new forms of decentralized ownership. The firm has doubled the size of its staff to 15 to support the new funds.
The firm has previously invested in privacy-focused smart contract platform Aztec Network, Ethereum-based DeFi protocol Euler Finance, Polygon and Uniswap, to name a few. Variant Fund III follows a $110 million second fund last October, itself coming about a year after the $22.5 million debut fund.
“Variant was designed for this moment in crypto. And we have stayed small for a reason: because it enables us to work intimately with our portfolio and guide founders through the most important questions they face early on in their journey,” Variant partners Li Jin, Spencer Noon and Jesse Walden wrote in the post. “That work is as critical now as ever.”
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