Story Protocol Raises $29.3 Million in Seed Round Led by A16z Crypto

Web3 startup, Story Protocol, has secured a $29.3 million seed round led by Andreessen Horowitz’s crypto fund, A16z Crypto. The funding round also saw participation from prominent investors including Hashed, Mirana Corp, DAO5, Samsung Next Fund, Two Small Fish Ventures, Berggruen, and SLVC.

The primary objective of the fundraising is to accelerate the development of Story Protocol’s web3 infrastructure platform. The company aims to revolutionize the creation of narrative universes through its technology.

According to an Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) filing, A16z invested $10 million in Story Protocol through its CNK Seed Fund. The involvement of such reputable investors indicates confidence in the startup’s vision and potential.

Seung Soo Kim, described as a co-founder and Chief Executive Officer according to Pitchbook, leads Story Protocol. However, his LinkedIn profile lists him as the Chief of Staff. Kim is joined by co-founders Jason Levy and Jason Zhao, while Ben Sternberg serves as the Chief Financial Officer.

Story Protocol was established in 2022, with Kim having previously founded Radish Fiction. Notably, Radish Fiction was acquired by Korean social media giant Kakao for $440 million in 2021.

Jason Levy, an experienced professional with senior positions at Amazon and Apple, founded his own startup, World Between Worlds, prior to joining Story Protocol. The startup focused on an entertainment app allowing users to virtually visit real-world places through their mobile phones. Jason Zhao, on the other hand, served as a product manager at Google’s AI subsidiary, DeepMind.

Ben Sternberg, the Chief Financial Officer of Radish Fiction before joining Story Protocol in September of the previous year, brings valuable experience to the team.

Story Protocol’s successful fundraising comes at a time when the crypto market is perceived to be in a bearish mode, and funding for web3 startups has declined since June 2022. Additionally, the metaverse industry has faced setbacks, with major players like Meta Platforms, Microsoft, and Tencent experiencing layoffs.

Despite these challenges, Story Protocol remains optimistic about the potential of its platform. The company’s vision is to create, govern, and license intellectual property on-chain, forming an ecosystem of story legos that can be remixed and composed. This approach enables creators to build narrative stories with ownership and incentives.

With the newly secured funds, Story Protocol is well-positioned to advance its web3 infrastructure platform and contribute to the evolution of narrative universes in the digital realm.

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