Amidst the Bear Market, New Math Startup Nillion Raises $20m+ From Over 150 Strategic Contributors
Investors bet on new internet infrastructure that the Founding Team of Uber, Indiegogo and Hedera Hashgraph think could create the next crypto bull run .
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Web3 startup Nillion has closed a $20m+ fundraise from strategic partners and investors. The project is based on a new mathematical innovation, invented by cryptography professor Dr. Miguel de Vega, called Nil Message Compute (NMC) which enables the creation of a non-blockchain decentralized network that aims to open up new, non-blockchain, decentralized use cases.
Nillion’s Leadership Team
Since its founding in November 2021, Nillion has bootstrapped to a headcount of over 40 with no external funding. Members of the Founding Teams of Uber, Indiegogo and Hedera Hashgraph, as well as key executives from Coinbase and Nike have joined forces at Nillion to build the platform. The company aims to become the first non-blockchain decentralized network designed to enable new decentralized use cases while providing the private and secure transfer, storage and computation of data.
Nillion CEO, Alex Page, reports that raising $20m+ from over 150 investors was a conscious decision to prevent typical concentrated ownership amongst a small number of venture capitalists who may have adverse incentives to ‘dump’ in the long-term:
“We’ve seen so many Web3 projects suffer because their network was owned by early investors with excessively concentrated holdings. That’s exactly why we passed on certain Silicon Valley VCs who wanted over 5% of tokens to simply lend their name to the project. Instead we carefully invited a widely distributed pool of early contributors who love, support and add value to the project.”
The round was led by Distributed Global, and includes investment from Big Brain Holdings, Chapter One, GSR, Hashkey, OP Crypto, SALT Fund and 150+ others.
David Gan, GP of OP Crypto, added:
“It’s very rare to have a truly novel math innovation being built by an elite ‘Avengers level’ team. Nillion could open a new universe of use cases blockchain never imagined. What proof of work did for blockchain, I think NMC may do for Multi-Party Computation as a technology.”
NMC enables the fragmentation and dispersion of data across the Nillion network of nodes which creates privacy while still allowing the underlying data to be computed on quickly. A key feature of the technology is that this process occurs without the need for communication between the nodes.
According to the team, company website and online materials, NMC technology unlocks new utility in Web3, such as decentralized credit scoring, decentralized trusted execution environments, private NFTs and decentralized secure storage services. Other potential use cases promised outside of web3 include storing healthcare records on the network while being able to run analysis on the records without jeopardizing an individual’s right to privacy.
Nil Message Compute (NMC) was developed by Nillion’s Chief Scientist, Dr. Miguel de Vega, who has authored more than 30 patents in the fields of machine learning, data optimization and mathematics. In addition to Dr. Vega, Nillion’s leadership team includes:
- Chief Technology Officer Conrad Whelan, the Founding Engineer of Uber.
- Head of Cryptography Dr. Elizabeth Quaglia, a senior lecturer at Royal Holloway, University of London, one of the world’s leading cryptography institutions.
- Chief Executive Officer Alex Page, an ex-Goldman Sachs investment banker and Hedera SPV General Partner
- Director of Crypto Tristan Litré, previously CTO of a DeFi platform acquired by AQRU.
- Chief Business Officer Slava Rubin, the Founder and former CEO of Indiegogo.
- Chief Strategy Officer Andrew Masanto, who started two of the top 100 cryptocurrencies – Hedera Hashgraph and Reserve.
- Head of Ecosystem Mark McDermott, previously the Lead of Innovation Partnerships at Nike.
- General Counsel Lindsay Danas Cohen, the former Associate General Counsel at Coinbase and a legal counsel at Bloomberg.
Nillion is prioritizing ecosystem development from an early stage in protocol development and reports significant interest from both Web2 and Web3 participants.
Alex Page, CEO of Nillion, said:
“We’ve had expressions of interest from over 120 companies wanting to test applications or build on Nillion, which shows the need for a commercially viable private computation network. Data stored on the Nillion network is not only safe, but it can be used for extremely fast, private computations.”
Nillion is new internet infrastructure for the secure storage and computation of data. It is a decentralized network (albeit not a blockchain) that utilizes a novel mathematical innovation called Nil Message Compute (NMC) which represents a generational leap in a technology known as secure multi-party computation (MPC). Nillion facilitates the fragmentation of data across a network of nodes, while allowing the underlying data to be computed on at commercially viable speeds.