Animoca Brands, blockchain gaming giant and venture capital company, plans to raise between $1 billion and $2 billion as part of a new metaverse-focused fund called Animoca Capital, Nikkei Asia reported.
The fund is looking to invest in mid- to late-stage metaverse businesses, according to Yat Sui, Animoca’s co-founder and executive chairman. It will focus on digital property rights for NFTs and land in the metaverse, and function as a “good entry point” for investors to access Web3 companies.
Animoca Brands has grown to become the largest blockchain investment unit in Asia by being an early investor in projects such as OpenSea, Dapper Labs, Yield Guild Games, Star Atlas and Axie Infinity developer Sky Mavis.
However, Animoca itself has various backers, such as Temasek and True Global Ventures, who now want to directly invest in later stage companies with less risk and not just be exposed to Animoca’s portfolio companies — hence the new Animoca Capital structure.
“The fund will be focused on equity optimization,” Sui told Nikkei Asia when describing the need for a separate investment vehicle. “As a fund, you optimize for return. So it’s different.”
Its first investment in a startup is expected to happen next year, and there will be no geographical restrictions when assessing startups, he added.
Animoca did not immediately respond to Blockworks’ request for a comment.
Animoca Brands has over 340 investments and dozens of subsidiaries in the Web3 space, including The Sandbox. Its portfolio investment and digital asset reserves combined were valued at approximately $5.7 billion as of June 2022, according to a letter from the chair.
Animoca has been “building an open Web3 and facilitating an open metaverse” and raised $358 million fundraising in January and completed another $110 million raise in September to do so.
It has also partnered with Yuga Labs on the Otherside project, the metaverse game of Yuga Labs’ Bored Ape Yacht Club. And most recently has announced a partnership with esports company FaZe Clan to co-produce events and games in The Sandbox.
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