UPDATE (Jan. 14, 2022, 05:00 UTC): ConsenSys claimed in a lawsuit that Gupta managed a single fund with less than $14 million, rather than the “number of $50 million-plus funds” she told CoinDesk she managed during her tenure at ConsenSys. Read more here.
The former head of ConsenSys Ventures, Kavita Gupta, has launched the Delta Blockchain Fund, with a target size of $50 million to $100 million.
Gupta previously managed a number of $50 million-plus funds for ConsenSys Ventures in 2018. She left the firm in 2019 to teach at Stanford University and is now back in the venture capital world with her own fund.
The new Delta Blockchain Fund is oversubscribed for the first close, at more than $30 million, and it has attracted investment from founders of Quantstamp, Polygon, Viraj Mehta from Rosy Blue, Klaus Hommels from Lakestar and others.
Gupta told CoinDesk she started building the fund around six weeks ago. It will invest in non-fungible tokens (NFTs), decentralized finance (DeFi), scalability and multi-chain interoperability with a focus on decentralized identity. Another focus is storage and computation from both a hardware and software perspective, which she says is important in supporting institutional adoption.
“I wanted to start my own fund to be able to build the portfolio and support the founders completely and purely based on my vision and belief, and with my lessons learned from over a decade of investing,” Gupta told CoinDesk.
Daniel Novy, another ex-ConsenSys employee who has been in the crypto industry since 2010, will support Gupta as a venture partner. Vince Molinari, former CEO of Templum Markets, will support Gupta and Novy on regulatory issues, “bridging the gap of regulatory understanding at a very early stage, which is unique to pre-seed or seed stage funds,” Gupta said.
Tackling the gender gap
The crypto and venture capital industries have suffered from a lack of female leaders, and Gupta said that although some progress has been made, more is needed.
“I didn’t see women of color running their own funds when I started in this space, which has changed a lot but not yet that much in the blockchain industry, and it is time for that,” said Gupta.
According to Gupta, the new fund will channel investment to projects and developers “building products to scale and support a decentralized world irrespective of their chain solution.”
“We truly believe that the future will be on multi-chain, and we want to support various cross-bridging, scalable, multi-chain solutions and dapps on them,” she said.
So far the fund has invested in Nahmii, a layer 2 scaling protocol for the Ethereum blockchain; Swap Kiwi, which allows users to swap NFTs with each other by connecting to a wallet; and Metaverse AI, which builds the Open Metaverse with full-stack infrastructure and dapps; Fodl, which enables traders to use leverage without paying a funding rate; and Taker, the first protocol to provide liquidity to the NFT market through a DAO.
UPDATE (Sept. 21 13:21 UTC): This article has been modified to show that the fund targets a size of $50 million to $100 million.
CORRECTION (Sept. 22 18:04 UTC): A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that the fund has invested in a company called Chainmonsters.