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How to Get Funding for Your Blockchain Startup

By Tim Hinchliffe 12 May, 2020

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As more and more industries recognize the transformative power of blockchain solutions, the opportunities for startups to get blockchain funding continue to evolve.

Startups that enlist the world’s most secure form of data distribution are highly sought after by healthcare providers, legal firms, cyber security experts, and a whole host of other key stakeholders who realize how their industries can benefit from blockchain technology.

The more earned media your blockchain startup obtains, the more investors will be able to find out about it. 

Having a robust blockchain PR strategy is key to attracting the attention of journalists who can amplify your blockchain startup, so that your message can be seen and heard by investors.

But in addition to a solid PR strategy, here we show you how you can get funding for your blockchain startup and where.

Blockchain Accelerators

Any startup accelerator worth its salt will provide you with access to its network of investors, including blockchain accelerators.

For startups looking to go through acceleration programs, they must do thorough research to find out which is best for them while taking into consideration the cost of the programs, where they are located, and what they offer in terms of investment opportunities.

Startup accelerators offer programs all over the world, spanning cities across North America, Europe, Australia, and other English and non-English speaking regions across the globe.

In recent years, accelerators that specialize in blockchain startups have also been popping up, so there is no shortage of programs that are close by to choose from.

Some blockchain-specific accelerators include:

Graduating from a blockchain accelerator shows investors that your startup has passed the litmus test for investability, and the investors that partner with accelerators are already looking for exactly the types of solutions your blockchain startup provides.

It’s supply and demand. Investors want blockchain solutions. They partner with accelerators to find the best emerging blockchains startups, and they invest.

Blockchain Funds

If a blockchain accelerator is not an option, you can also go straight to a blockchain fund or Venture Capital (VC) firm for investment.

2018 was the year that saw the most funded blockchain startups, and there has been a slight decline ever since, with bigger investments now being aimed more at enterprises, according to CB Insights.

However, as traditional investors are looking more to later-stage blockchain companies, other VC firms have stepped-up their funding into blockchain startups.

As Crebaco Global CEO Sidarth Sogani told Cointelegraph, “There are specific VCs for blockchain as far as we have observed. The traditional VCs are still taking time to understand the technology. As the industry gets more regulated, scam free and mature, more traditional VCs will enter.”

Good news for startups is that there are investment funds already set up that specifically cater to blockchain startups.

For example, the European Union recently set up a 100 million euro AI and blockchain investment fund exclusively for startups.

In North America, New York-based Digital Currency Group tops PitchBook’s list of the VC investors in blockchain, followed by San Francisco-based firms Blockchain Capital and Pantera.

And Angel.co has a list of over 1,000 blockchain investors and 4,670 blockchain companies, with an average evaluation of $4.9 million.

Blockchain startup investment funds are indeed available, but getting their attention requires effort as many investors are looking for proven track records of adoption.

Blockchain Investment Events

Blockchain is having such a profound impact across industries that there are now entire summits dedicated to blockchain and blockchain investment.

These events are where your networking skills can really come into play because that’s where you’ll run into all the major investors.

Like blockchain accelerators, blockchain events take place all over the world, including:

  • Blockchain Fund Summit (New York)
  • Blockchain Innovation and Investment Summit (Dubai)
  • LA Blockchain Summit (Los Angeles)
  • Blockchain World Congress (London)

Coindesk has conveniently put together an up-to-date list of major blockchain events, and there’s bound to be one near you.

Blockchain events not only give startups the opportunity to meet investors, but also to learn what investors are looking for through the many keynotes, workshops, and networking sessions that make up the backbones of any good event.

Establishing Trust: Blockchain PR

Journalists, like investors, understand the value that blockchain startups provide and how they are completely changing the digital landscape with each line of code they write.

They also realize that there is a murky side to blockchain and that is evidenced by all the so-called crypto startups that have come and gone in recent years.

As Sogani told CB Insights, “Per our statistics, over 95% of blockchain or crypto projects failed. Most were scams and MLM/Affiliate marketing schemes and some of them didn’t know how to head a company, and because of lack of knowledge, they failed.”

Both investors and journalists receive proposals and pitches from an abundance of blockchain startups, but knowing which to trust can be difficult.

Blockchain PR helps build that trust and understanding by providing journalists with accurate information that they can publish and that potential investors can read and understand.

Given that new blockchain startups have been popping up at a steady frequency over the last few years, it’s important that they ensure to stand out in terms of credibility in a market which has the potential to become saturated.

A comprehensive PR strategy can get the right message in front of the right audience that accurately portrays your company’s mission and values.

This is something that investors are sure to appreciate and is a very positive return on investment.

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