Phantom Raises $9 Million in Series A Funding to Launch its Multi-Chain Crypto Wallet
SAN FRANCISCO — July 14, 2021 — Phantom, a multi-chain crypto wallet and browser extension for managing digital assets and accessing decentralized apps, announced today it has secured $9 million in Series A funding led by A16z, with participation from Variant Fund, Jump Capital, DeFi Alliance, and Solana Foundation.
This financing round also included participation from Garry Tan, an early Coinbase investor, among other angel investors from Compound, dYdX, Audius, Lolli, and Ethereum Foundation. With the new injection of funds, Phantom will continue to build its team, develop new platform features, and expand to other blockchains.
Founded by Brandon Millman, Chris Kalani, and Francesco Agosti, Phantom’s mission is to provide a wallet that’s easy to use for beginners and veterans. Previously building products for 0x, Matcha, Twitter, and Facebook, the team collectively brings nine years of experience to build a crypto wallet for the next billion users.
Phantom has seen extensive growth since its beta launch in April 2021, adding 40,000 users, growing its signups to 70,000, and securing $500K in grants from Serum and Solana during that time period. By providing a wallet capable of many key functions, Phantom has quickly grown its US user base as the industry moves towards fostering global DeFi adoption.
“Users are looking to seamlessly interact with decentralized exchanges and NFT platforms regardless of what blockchain they’re built on,” said Brandon Millman co-founder and CEO of Phantom.
“The wallets and bridges currently available are preventing users from moving digital assets from one blockchain to another without third-party assistance, resulting in decreased usage and fragmented participation across the DeFi ecosystem. With the world moving into a multi-chain future, the strong interest from the participants in our beta group indicates that our team has designed a DeFi wallet for the masses, one that’s in a unique position to provide value to users unlike any other related product on the market.”
In order to participate in DeFi, users need a good crypto wallet. Crypto wallets are among the first points of interaction for consumers and that experience needs to be as seamless as it is robust so that it can be used by the growing number of users across the numerous blockchain ecosystems. DeFi is complex and the lack of guidance presents a steep learning curve, Phantom aims to lower the barrier to entry by providing users an easy-to-use interface and helping guide new users through every step of the onboarding process.
“We’re entering the next phase of decentralized computing, and Phantom is an important part of that story,” said Garry Tan, an early investor in Coinbase. “Great user experience for interfacing with digital assets and decentralized applications is the missing link.”
By visiting phantom.app, users can install the browser extension to manage digital assets and access decentralized applications on the Solana blockchain. Compatible with Google Chrome, Brave, Firefox, and Microsoft Edge, Phantom provides the basics and sets the user up to be able to take advantage of everything popping up in the ecosystem.
At launch, Phantom is offering multi-chain, staking, ledger, and NFT support. Phantom also integrated with FTX Pay recently, allowing users to easily transfer $SOL, $USDC and $USDT directly from FTX. Later this year, Phantom will be releasing its mobile applications for iOS and Android and will be adding new features, including Ethereum and ETH L2 support, bridges between chains, ETH and SOL staking, and Fiat Onramp via Moonpay.
“Phantom’s mission is to provide a beautiful, easy-to-use wallet that bridges assets and gives users a seamless experience, allowing them to switch between networks without confusion and participate more actively in on-chain activity,” said Arianna Simpson, partner at a16z. “We are extremely excited to partner with Phantom as they build the next generation of crypto wallets.”
“The next phase of DeFi would be focused on onboarding mainstream users and one of the biggest barriers to that is intuitive user interface and workflows. Phantom has one of the best teams at the forefront of solving for mainstream access to DeFi and NFTs” said Saurabh Sharma, General Partner at Jump Capital.
Assets deposited as collateral on DeFi platforms, a measure known as total value locked (TVL), have grown to more than $100 billion according to the website DeFiLlama. A closer look at the list of protocols shows some of the biggest gains over the past week were on protocols operating on Solana.
Notable gains from Solana-based projects include a 104% gain in TVL for Parrot Protocol (PAI) while Raydium (RAY) and SolFarm (TULIP) have increased 46% and 38%, respectively.
Running on Ethereum, InstaDApp and Sablier Finance have both increased their TVL by more than 20% while Liquidity increased by 56%. The number of DeFi users — 1.75 million — while still small for now, is growing fast, increasing by 50% in the first quarter of 2021. As a result, DeFi will increasingly become more cross-chain and interoperable across layer one and two ecosystems.
“To support mainstream volume, blockchain computing is evolving to a more complex stack of specialized, scalable networks,” said Jesse Walden, partner at Variant Fund. “Phantom abstracts this complexity, enabling easy access to a user’s identity, money, and data as they traverse the growing crypto economy’s underlying networks.”
Founded by Brandon Millman, Chris Kalani, and Francesco Agosti, Phantom’s mission is to provide a DeFi wallet to the masses. Previously building products for 0x, Twitter, Facebook, Matcha, and Crypto Corgis, the team collectively brings 9 years of experience to build a crypto wallet for the next billion users. Phantom is a crypto wallet that lets you manage digital assets and access decentralized apps across multiple blockchains. Currently, Phantom is a browser extension being used to transact and interact with decentralized exchanges, NFT platforms and blockchain games on the Solana blockchain.