Crypto

Chia blockchain payment platform in fast track for IPO

Chia Network plans to conduct its initial public offering on an “expedited schedule,” the company’s chief operating officer and chairman of the board said Monday.

Gene Hoffmann called the IPO “closest” shortly after Bloomberg reported that these Programmable Currency platforms had completed their Series D funding round.

“This is as expected,” he said.

Hoffmann said the latest infusion of capital from the likes of investment giants Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) and Richmond Global Ventures will allow Chia to grow even if “macro” conditions deteriorate. “We can focus on developing the business without worrying about outside forces,” he said.

According to an anonymous source quoted by Bloomberg, Chia is worth about $ 500 million, more than double the company’s previous estimate. Bram Cohen, creator of Chia and founder of BitTorrent, has been saying for several years that he intends to make Chia public. In a press release, Cohen said the company “is delighted to welcome such a prestigious and trusted group of investors to support our mission to radically improve the global financial and payment systems.

Chia said Monday that it is using the funds to hire and strengthen its infrastructure. Hoffman fleshed out those plans, saying the company would increase its workforce to about 75 by the end of the year, roughly three times its current level. Roughly half of that number would be engineers focusing on building more usable blockchains and smart transaction platforms. The company has already hired engineers from BitTorrent, Blockstream, and Dash, as well as other cryptocurrency and blockchain companies.

The rest of the staff will be part of a development and go-to-market team that will work with major banks, government agencies and other institutions. “We want to make sure we have the necessary resources to grow,” Hoffman said.

Read more: Bram Cohen: “Getting rich is a terrible indicator of success”

As part of what Hoffmann called the “dumbbell strategy,” the company also targets consumers looking for a more efficient way to send and complete transactions, including international payments.

The company touts its decentralized blockchain and smart transaction platform as more energy efficient than competing systems. It launched its network on March 17 and started activating transactions on May 3. Hoffmann said he is currently developing over 600,000 nodes.

Cygni Capital, Slow Ventures and Naval Ravikant are among other investors in the latest round. David Frazi, Managing Partner of Richmond Global Ventures who has made individual investments in the company, will serve on Chia’s board of directors.

“Chia is modernizing Bitcoin from the ground up, taking all that is fair and addressing all of its energy, security, compliance, and usability issues,” Frazi said in a press release.

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