VC Fund NFX Launches Crypto Gaming Seed Fund

Venture capital firm NFX has launched a crypto gaming initiative to get pre-seed and seed funds into the hands of founders within nine days.

NFX earlier this week announced it had lined up $450 million to invest in seed-stage companies. General Partner (GP) Morgan Beller teased that the fund would be doing “something cool in gaming.”

NFX put the money into action on Thursday with the launch of six FAST (Founder-friendly, Application-driven, Software-enabled and Transparent) initiatives, which span a number of industries. The group is looking for founders who are “bringing gaming and web3/crypto/NFTs together in new ways,” according to the website.

NFX has made $20 million available for this batch of FASTs, and funds are awarded on a first-come, first-served basis.

Why should founders consider applying for FAST funding instead of pursuing a more traditional round of fundraising? FAST offers “speed and simplicity and the chance to get NFX on your team,” James Currier, NFX co-founder and GP, told CoinDesk in an interview.

Gaming background

The new FAST initiative ties together the gaming backgrounds of two NFX founders, Currier’s early embrace of the crypto industry and the addition of a new GP with deep crypto ties.

Currier previously co-founded and headed social gaming company WonderHill, which merged with Kabam in 2010. NFX co-founder and GP Gigi Levy-Weiss formerly served as the chief executive at online gambling company 888 Holdings and invested in mobile game company Playtika.

Beller, co-creator of Facebook’s Libra (now Diem), joined NFX as a GP in September 2020 and has become increasingly interested in the crypto gaming space.

She tweeted yesterday that gaming will likely be the “gateway drug” that brings the next billion people into the decentralized web.

For a while, I thought wallets/stablecoins were going to be what onboarded the next 1B people into web3. Increasingly, it seems that the real gateway drug will be gaming. With that, if you’re building (or even thinking of building) anything in this world…

— Morgan Beller (@beller) October 7, 2021

Asked about the most exciting opportunities in crypto gaming, Beller told CoinDesk that “gaming people are finally coming into web3, so just the quality of games that you’re seeing is going to be higher.”

NFX’s shortlist of future FAST sectors includes decentralized finance (DeFi), and Beller says that might not be the end. “Stay tuned for more crypto and web3 FASTs,” she said.

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