Matter Labs has commenced a $2M Series Seed financing round led by Placeholder and joined by 1kx, Dekrypt, Hashed, and Dragonfly Capital Partners. The team at Matter Labs has been working for the past year on a Layer 2 scalability and privacy solution on top of the Ethereum blockchain.
The main use of the Seed funds will be to grow Matter Labs’ scientific and engineering teams to support the company’s R&D roadmap. Specific focus will be on the development of protocols and infrastructure driven by Zero-Knowledge Proofs, a family of cryptographic protocols that enable one party to independently verify the integrity of computations performed by untrusted counterparties.
Matter Labs’ development efforts leverage ZK Rollup, which Ethereum Co-Founder Vitalik Buterin has called his favorite Layer-2 scaling solution, to build an architecture that is secure, scalable and censorship-resistant, finally breaking free of the so-called “blockchain trilemma.” The company was awarded a grant to continue this work by the Ethereum Foundation in February, 2019.
In parallel, Matter Labs intends to develop user-centric products that put its technological achievements to work in the service of real-world use cases. A highly scalable payments system emphasizing security and usability is planned as the first such product, to be announced in the coming months.
The investment round, which saw strong demand, was specifically sized to complete work on these initiatives later this year, following the philosophy of “communication through action”.
“Zero-Knowledge Proofs are the most promising solution to the problem of blockchain scalability, especially in applications where maintaining a high degree of decentralization is paramount. Unlike other approaches that use game-theoretical incentives, ZKPs rely on pure math to simplify the user experience and reduce the amount of work users have to do,” said Co-Founder Alex Gluchowski. “Additionally, ZKPs pave the way for true privacy, which we believe will be imperative in the future as blockchain applications find broad-based adoption.”
A prototype of Matter Labs’ payment platform, designed to offer decentralization with high throughput, low transaction cost and high usability, is live on the Ethereum mainnet. The team is working toward an MVP version, and will be in attendance at major blockchain and crypto events around the world over the coming months.