Binance Holdings Ltd., the operator of one of the world’s largest crypto exchanges, and its local subsidiary WazirX have jointly set up a $50-million blockchain fund to support the development and growth of blockchain startups in India, per an announcement Tuesday.
The development comes weeks after the Supreme Court eased cryptocurrency trade in the country.
Binance had acquired WazirX last year with the vision of promoting the use and adoption of blockchain technologies in India.
The new fund will incubate and invest in blockchain projects and startups focused on solving industrial and social problems through the use of blockchain technology. It will make investments in both equity and tokens, ranging from $100,000 to $5 million, Binance said in a statement.
The investments will include, but not be limited to, fiat-to-digital assets gateway solutions, trading platforms, payment, and remittance solutions, digital asset wallets, stable coins, DeFi platforms, decentralized applications (dApps) and more, it added.
“India has the biggest tech talent pool in the world. With this fund, we want to encourage and enable more and more founders and teams to come in and BUIDL. This initiative also shows the incredible potential that the Indian blockchain ecosystem has to offer. Apart from funding transformative blockchain projects in India, we look forward to collaborating with other investment funds to grow the ecosystem even further,” Nischal Shetty, Founder and CEO of WazirX, said.
The fund will also partner with venture funds in India that are actively investing and supporting the blockchain ecosystem. The selected startup founders and teams will get direct access to Binance’s global blockchain ecosystem, the statement said.
Binance’s global blockchain ecosystem includes Binance Chain, Binance Cloud, Binance DEX, Binance Launchpad, Binance Research, Binance Academy, Binance X and portfolio companies such as WazirX, DappReview and Trust Wallet among others.
Additionally, the initiative will look to provide mentorship and support to universities and student organizations interested in setting up university blockchain technology incubators.
In the past, Binance had also acquired Hong Kong-based DApp and JEX and San Francisco-based Trust Wallet. Separately, it has also applied for an operating licence in Singapore. Binance has an office in Singapore and is backed by Vertex Venture Holdings Ltd., the venture capital arm of Singapore-based Temasek Holdings Pte.