Breaking into Web3

Investments in Web3 surged last year. Blockchain startups raised USD 20 million on an average day in 2021, and the average seed capital for these startups increased from USD 1.5 million in 2020 to USD 3.3 million in 2021. Out of these, 40 turned out as unicorns. In the past year, $13.2B was raised across 83 deals.

You may be wondering if speaking Solidity is necessary to get into the ecosystem. The answer is no. The web3 space, although highly appreciative of the (so far) niche talent, understands the shortages of experienced professionals in the space and thus welcomes those who wish to get into the ecosystem and are willing to learn fast. Whenever you are planning a web3 Bootcamp, joining the mentorship group, or learning online on your own, this could already differentiate you in skill and knowledge from many others. 

What about diversity?

Great question. Although 21% of all users in web3 are females so far, the %age of the female builders and contributors is much more minimal. Having spoken to the team with a single female at series A and full male teams at Seed, the baseline for gender diversity remains to be on the wish list. Certain companies are treating the critical mix with their full attention, however, some remain to be focused on growth at all costs. When interviewing, ask about the m/f mix in the team and how the leadership views this going forward. Do not be discouraged by today’s ratio, thankfully, you are here to be changing that.  

Ways forward:

  1. Joining a Venture studio: venture builders like Superlayer, Advanced Blockchain have been known to work with promising founders on the initial idea, provide the initial Seed capital, and with key members of the founding team under the employment of the parent venture builder. To recap, what venture builders bring to the table is resources, knowledge, and capital and are mainly valued for depth and speed to the market (which was proven times again). What we see in web3 is the fastest adoption of the technology and generally, the openness of the consumer to try new products from the ecosystem, making this an appealing option to join and scale fast. 
  2. Dev studio: those wishing to work on multiple web3 projects at different times and build up a wide skillset can benefit from joining the dev studio in any part of the world. Make sure to select the one with the best reviews and most suitable clients. 
  3. The startup itself: dependent on where you see yourself you can join the startup or a unicorn in the space and learn from the best. A lot of hype is connected with big names like Opensea, Blockchain, Coinbase, and Binance, yet do not forget about the adjacent spaces servicing the crucial need of the industry. Those players in the “utility spaces” will likely be focused on solving the problem for their niche, be it security, rewards, or architecture.

Shall you be up for the latter, here are the VCs to watch in the web3 ecosystem: A16Z, Paradigm Capital, Pantera Capital, FTX ventures, Coinbase ventures, Pillar VC, Rapid Capital, Multicoin Capital, KRH, 776, Lightspeed, Silverlake, Terraform labs, Pear VC, Initialized capital, and NFX.

Know some more studios and VCs that should have been mentioned? Drop the note in the comments!

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