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Sam Altman’s New Crypto Startup Raises $115 million

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Sam Altman, the chief executive officer of OpenAI, co-founded a cryptocurrency business that has acquired further funds to advance its goal of giving everyone on the globe a digital ID.

We have previously reported that Altman was looking to raise 100 million for the organization behind the Worldcoin cryptocurrency initiative, Tools for Humanity, for which he is a co-founder.

On Thursday, it was reported that it had secured $115 million from investors. The business wants to identify each live individual uniquely by scanning their eyes through a tiny orb-shaped scanning gadget that uses blockchain to create distinctive digital identities by reading a user’s irises.

Along with the crypto team from Andreessen Horowitz, Bain Capital Crypto, and Distributed Global, Blockchain Capital led the Series C fundraising round.


The San Francisco-based business is creating support tools for Worldcoin, a cryptocurrency based on Ethereum that is still in beta. Its World ID software works to scan people’s eyes with a tiny orb to generate individual digital identities for them based on blockchain technology.

The startup has brought up a lot of issues related to privacy, data, and AI. The creation of a digital identity by scanning people’s eyes has prompted privacy and data issues, even if such an identity platform may be essential as AI makes it harder to identify who or what one is interacting with online.

Worldcoin has been linked to being engaged in the process of delivering a universal basic income if AI starts to eliminate large numbers of employment due to its decentralized structure and aspirations to generate truly unique digital identities, something that has also prompted dispute.

The CEO and co-founder of Tools for Humanity, Alex Blania, stated that it is crucial for people to be able to protect their privacy while also demonstrating their humanity as we enter the age of AI. By doing this, we can make sure that everyone can profit from the financial gains that AI is expected to bring about.

“As we embark on the age of AI, it is imperative that individuals are able to maintain personal privacy while proving their humanness. In doing so we can help ensure that everyone can realize the financial benefits that AI is poised to deliver.”

How the funds will be used

Alex Blania declined to discuss the company’s worth in an interview. According to him, the additional investment would be utilized to expand the startup’s 150-person workforce through new hires and product development. Some information about the purchase was previously published by the publication Financial Times.

According to Blania, the investment round shows how serious the project is. He added:

People really made jokes about us, like we read too many sci-fi books, when we started talking about it three years ago, but that is changed now.

An exception to the rule

Tools for Humanity is a striking exception where financing for the majority of cryptocurrency businesses has dried up. 

According to Crunchbase statistics, venture financing to VC-backed Web3 firms fell 82% in the first quarter of the year, from $9.1 billion in Q1 of 2022 to barely $1.7 billion.

Since the fourth quarter of 2020, when just $1.1 billion was raised, when many people had never heard of Web3, the financing amount has dropped to its lowest level.

Blania emphasized that the Worldcoin initiative, which features a Worldcoin token, is guaranteed to be decentralized by blockchain technology. Additionally, he claimed that Worldcoin, which has nearly 2 million users registered, might be helpful in the distribution of a universal basic income since it combines an identification system and an economic layer.

Theoretically, a society where AI significantly reduces the number of employment available may benefit from a universal basic income.

The Worldcoin initiative has thus far seen some obstacles. Due to logistical difficulties, it was forced to cease operations in at least seven countries last year, which raised questions about data protection.

At the intersection of cryptocurrency and Artificial Intelligence

In a future where artificial intelligence raises fresh concerns about what is human and what is not on the internet, the company’s identification technology will be crucial, according to Blania. It serves as an illustration of how the fields of AI and cryptography intersect.

The initial driving force, according to him, was how to construct infrastructure in a world where AI is gaining ground and growing more potent.

A worldwide identity system using iris scans will be developed as part of Worldcoin’s ambitious objectives, giving users access to a free global money.

With this innovative strategy, the business hopes to tackle two problems brought on by artificial intelligence’s rising sophistication: telling people apart from robots and offering some kind of universal basic income to make up for anticipated job losses brought on by AI.

The core technology of the firm is an orb that establishes a person’s unique identification via iris biometrics, establishing a digital World ID that can be used anonymously in many apps without disclosing the user’s identify. Users can get free Worldcoin tokens after proving their identification.


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