The digital assets sector has had an incredible run in 2021. After Bitcoin and Ethereum surged to all-time highs, investors poured billions of dollars into emerging startups that serve this expanding sector.
Some of these startups raised more capital and gathered more users than ever before. Here are the top three most successful or noteworthy crypto startups of 2021.
Axie Infinity (Sky Mavis)
Vietnamese studio Sky Mavis leveraged the Ethereum network to create a unique crypto experience this year – a play-to-earn online game. The company’s Axie Infinity game was launched in May this year and already has over 1.9 million daily active users. Many of the game’s early adopters were based in the Philippines, where some users consider the game a viable source of gig work.
The in-game token AXS is now trading at $122.79, implying a market capitalization of $7.5 billion. Meanwhile, the game’s developer has raised $152 million in a Series B round led by Andreesen Horowitz earlier this month. As the play-to-earn model evolves, this crypto startup could be worth watching closely.
Non-fungible tokens or NFTs were digital assets that rose from obscurity to global awareness in just a few months earlier this year. Popularized by the NBA and pushed by some celebrities, NFTs are now part of the mainstream crypto landscape. New York-based startup Open Sea seems to be tapping into this opportunity already.
According to DappRadar, Open Sea processed over 398,638 trades, collectively worth $4.03 billion in aggregate in just over 30 days. That makes its platform the dominant NFT marketplace. The developer recently raised $100 million in a Series B round led (yet again) by Andreessen Horowitz.
While the other two startups on this list are exclusively focused on gaming and entertainment, Solve.Care is trying to solve a much more serious problem: healthcare. The company describes itself as a healthcare relationship management platform based on blockchain technology. In other words, it connects patients to health professionals and coordinates all kinds of benefits, care packages, payments through smart contracts.
Based in Tallin, Harjumaa, Estonia, this tiny startup was launched in 2017 but has already secured noteworthy clients in the insurance industry. The team also partnered with Pune-based HealthLink Technologies to bring cross-border, decentralized medical tech to Indian doctors.
Solve.Care has raised $30 million in two successful funding rounds this year. As the market for decentralized health data and medical services evolves, this team could emerge with a first-mover advantage.
The digital assets landscape is quickly evolving. Professional investors and venture capital firms have taken significant steps to fund this sector in 2021. This flood of capital could help decentralize the global internet and create wealth for early adopters across the world.