According to the Financial Times, Ethereum blockchain tools and consulting firm ConsenSys is in talks to raise funds valued at $ 3 billion, citing unnamed sources. In April, it raised $ 65 million from JP Morgan, Mastercard, UBS, and several other blockchain firms.
That’s no big surprise given that several blockchain companies recently closed multi-billion dollar deals, including bitcoin development house Blockstream, which raised $ 210 million on a valuation of $ 3.2 billion . Although the business models of the two are very different.
ConsenSys has two main divisions, one of which focuses on high profile cryptocurrency tools like the MetaMask wallet; Codefi for digital assets, payments and staking out; and Infura for the infrastructure. It also advises companies that operate privately approved blockchains.
In the early days, ConsenSys focused exclusively on the cryptocurrency sector, developing its own tools and financing numerous investments. But when the crypto winter of 2018 arrived, he faced an uncertain future as he relied on funding from founder Joe Lubin as the very first Ethereum investor. He laid off staff and increased his advisory activities to corporate clients, including major banks, the largest agribusinesses in the world, fashion houses such as LVMH and others.
In 2019, rumors circulated that ConsenSys was aiming for $ 200 million in funding, but on the street it was said it was looking for an over-valuation of $ 1 billion and was too much of a conglomerate. Therefore, at the beginning of 2020, before the pandemic, she laid off more staff and spun off ConsenSys Investments. In doing so, she focused on her core tools and advice. Then Covid-19 caught on and cut more staff last April.
Fate turned in mid-2020, highlighted by a deal with JP Morgan in August. The bank transferred responsibility for its Quorum Enterprise Blockchain platform to ConsenSys and invested in the company.
Shortly thereafter, the DeFi boom began, followed by a general cryptocurrency boom and the latest non-fungible token (NFT) frenzy. ConsenSys was involved in everything. While the management consultancy ConsenSys helped through the crypto winter, the company is currently booming on all fronts. But two areas stand out.
One of them is the Metamask wallet, the most popular wallet for those who want to store cryptocurrencies themselves. When ConsenSys announced its funding round in April, it had three million downloads and $ 2 billion in transactions using the wallet for token swaps. Those numbers now add up to ten million downloads and $ 9 billion in token swap transactions for which it earns a 0.875% fee, which has had $ 79 million in revenue as of October 2020, the vast majority since May 2021.
The use for token swaps is an optional feature that is currently used by 7,000 to 10,000 people on a daily basis. And now ConsenSys has launched an institutional version of its wallet.
The second standout area is the advisory side, where ConsenSys is involved in numerous central bank digital currency (CBDC) projects, including Korea (indirect), Thailand, Hong Kong, France and Australia.