The Mina Ecosystem raised $92 million from FTX Ventures and Three Arrows Capital through strategic and private MINA sales, with FTX’s participation marking the venture fund’s first substantial investment in zero-knowledge-based smart contract technology. Alan Howard, Amber Group, Blockchain.com, Brevan Howard, Circle Ventures, Finality Capital Partners, Pantera, and five other ecosystem backers joined the leaders. This is FTX Ventures’ first big investment in zero-knowledge smart contract technology, reflecting the crypto industry’s heightened focus on delivering zero-knowledge-based apps to Web3 to assure end-to-end security and user privacy.
Mina bills itself as the world’s lightest blockchain, driven entirely by its users. It’s a Layer-1 blockchain that makes it simple to construct zero-knowledge smart contracts, or zkApps. The recent attention brought to zk-rollups as a scaling solution to Ethereum’s high gas prices has popularized zero-knowledge proofs (ZKPs). Mina takes ZKP-based technology to the next level by placing zkApps, Mina’s ZKP smart contracts, in the hands of common people.
The cash will be used to attract world-class developers to help Mina become the dominant zero-knowledge platform within Web3. The Mina Foundation’s CEO, Evan Shapiro, says regarding the funds:
“The funds will be deployed to accelerate Mina’s adoption as the leading zero-knowledge platform”
“within Web3 by attracting world-class developers.”
“More specifically, Mina Foundation will be focused on opening up more grant programs,”
“such as a more robust grant program to support developers.”
With their ongoing funding program, they are also dedicated about assisting contributing teams and members of the Mina community.
“We have given out over 1,100 grants to the Mina Community including over 650 Genesis Founding members,”
“over 430 Prism Contributing Members, and many other quarterly grantees.”
“We are looking forward to continuing our commitment to expanding our grants programs”
“for developers and community builders,”
So, Shapiro continues.
Many blockchain ecosystems’ true objective was to connect peer-to-peer with permissionless technologies. Many teams, developers, and organizations loved the promise of blockchain solutions because it allowed people to make decisions without relying on intermediaries. Decentralization, on the other hand, has suffered as it has grown in popularity, almost becoming a victim of its own success. Most ecosystems retain the hierarchical structure established in Web2, and many networks are prone to censorship by a few rather than responsible to the community of users.
Mina attempts to scale and provide the same levels of accessibility to all users by minimizing the quantity of data each user is required to download.
They use zk-SNARK technology to create a snapshot of the whole blockchain. Developers can use zkApps to construct efficient decentralized apps without the use of middlemen by leveraging verified, real-world data.
One of the main aspirations of the blockchain world was to power trustless, peer-to-peer transactions without intermediaries. Only time will tell whether these concepts can be conveyed, developed, and changed to fit those who want to be a part of the true, decentralized future.