Sequoia Leads $450M Investment into Polygon


Venture capital firm Sequoia Capital has led a $450 million investment in blockchain network Polygon as part of a larger effort to fund Web3, CNBC reported Monday (Feb. 7).

Polygon serves as a support layer to Ethereum, which itself supports the ether cryptocurrency, helping it process transactions at scale.

Web3 is a blockchain-based, privacy-focused version of the internet that supporters say would free content and content creators from the clutches of Big Tech. It’s an idea that has major backers like Andreessen Horowitz’s a16z crypto VC fund, and high-profile skeptics like Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Twitter founder and Square CEO Jack Dorsey.

Polygon co-founder Sandeep Nailwal tells CNBC he sees the company becoming a decentralized version of Amazon Web Services.

“Web3 for me means ownership, censorship resistance and verified compute,” Nailwal said. While companies like Facebook or Twitter control their own computations, Web3 will bring “transparency” to those processes.

Polygon aims to become the platform where big brands can launch their own Web3 efforts, and has already got brands like Adidas and Prada experimenting with NFTs on its network. While many big companies have not yet bought into the idea of cryptocurrencies, Nailwal says NFTs have been easier for them to accept.

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While venture capital firms like Tiger Capital and Andreessen Horowitz have already invested in Web3, CNBC notes that this investment marks the first time Sequoia has expressed vocal interest in the concept.

“Thousands of developers across a range of applications are choosing Polygon and their complete set of scaling solutions for the Ethereum ecosystem,” said Shailesh Lakhani, managing director of Sequoia India. “This is an ambitious and aggressive team, one that values innovation at its core.”

Read more: Musk, Dorsey Hint VC Money Puts Web3 Vision at Risk

Musk and Dorsey have expressed doubts about Web3 in part because of its proximity to the VC world. On Twitter last year, Musk called Web3 “more marketing buzzword than reality right now.”

Dorsey has said Web3 was located “somewhere between a and z” — a reference to a16z. He later followed up with a more blunt assessment: “You don’t own ‘web3.’ The VCs and their LPs do.”