One of Thailand’s most well-known blockchain startups, OmiseGO, has secured funding, led by an undisclosed amount from Global Brain, an influential Japanese venture capitalist firm. Japanese-based 31 Ventures and Indonesia-based SMDV also participated, as well.
OmiseGO Goes From Strength to Strength
In addition to its ICO finishing before it even started thanks to tremendous demand, OmiseGO has the distinction of becoming the first Ethereum-based token to reach a market capitalization of over $1 billion, achieved over a year ago.The fact that it boasts Vitalik Buterin, founder of Ethereum and one of the cryptocurrency world’s most respected figures, as one of its advisors, certainly adds to its allure.
They’ve also been successful in securing partnerships. The fintech firm specializes in real-time payments, and one notable partnership is with McDonald’s in Thailand. OmiseGO is also backed by the government of Thailand, receiving the kind of official support that eludes many cryptocurrency startups.
However, it can be argued that its most significant milestone has been its partnership with Credit Saison, the third-largest credit card issuer in Japan.
Considering that Japan is a huge crypto market, it is safe to assume that Global Brain and 31 Ventures will serve to aid OmiseGO’s endeavors to dominate the Asia-Pacific region by specifically penetrating Japan, which considers Bitcoin a legal form of tender.
OmiseGO and Global Brain: A Natural Fit
The funding from Global Brain is perhaps more organic than usual, considering that Global Brain and OmiseGO have partnered on other initiatives.
They announced in March that they will collaborate to build a network of co-working spaces focused on blockchain called “Neutrino,” which they plan to first open in Shibuya of Tokyo, then expand to Singapore and Bangkok. Jun Hasegawa, the CEO of OmiseGO, stated that this will help spur innovation in terms of discovering new use cases, and encourage engineers to explore blockchain technology.
Both companies are also members of the Ethereum Community Fund (ECF), which aims to help blockchain-based companies collaborate, specifically as it relates to Ethereum. The fund aims to foster a strong foundation for the Ethereum ecosystem in general, and promote blockchain technology and decentralization worldwide.
Global Brain started in 2001 with a modest total of around $17 million in funds, but has emerged to become a major Japanese VC firm that tends to invest in emerging technologies, such as the Internet of Things, robots, and enterprise solutions.
With regards to the news of the funding, Hasegawa stated:
Today’s announcement with industry leaders like Global Brain, 31 Ventures, and SMDV is another solid step further on our path of developing a new payments infrastructure. We look forward to engaging in broader partnerships and opportunities to tap into Japan’s rapidly evolving market.
OmiseGO is not only focused on the payment sector. They’re also busy building out the entire OmiseGO ecosystem, which includes further development of its Wallet SDK, and the launch of its own decentralized exchange. They are also constructing an ambitious peer-to-peer network called Plasma to improve blockchain scalability.