Agora has raised a $12M Seed round led by Dragonfly

JERSEY CITY, N.J., April 2, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — Agora has raised a $12M Seed round to launch their digital dollar and asset platform purpose-built for the transmission of value on blockchain-based rails. This round of funding was led by Dragonfly. The round saw additional participation from General Catalyst, Hack VC, Kraken Ventures, as well as other funds and notable angels. Related strategic investors include Mirana Ventures, Mantle EcoFund, Foresight Ventures, Wintermute Ventures, Galaxy, and Consensys. 

Agora’s first product—a fully collateralized, freely tradeable US digital dollar (aka stablecoin)—will be launched soon and will only serve select markets outside the United States. Agora’s digital dollar, AUSD, will differ materially from existing product offerings. Agora believes in an open partnership model and that digital dollars should be treated akin to public goods. 

“We’ve been thrilled to see the market demand and reception of AUSD. We’re expecting to come to the market and shake up the rent-seeking and closed-partner models,” said Nick van Eck, co-founder and CEO of Agora. 

“The stablecoin market is rife with misaligned incentives, outdated technologies, and dubious regulatory structures,” noted Rob Hadick, General Partner at Dragonfly. “Agora is upending those existing models by approaching the market from a customer first perspective while building best in class technology in a compliant infrastructure that allows them to bring together the best partners in the world.” 

Agora’s reserve fund will be managed by VanEck, one of the world’s largest ETF issuers. The cash custodian of the fund will be one of the largest custodians in the world. Agora’s reserve fund assets will be bankruptcy remote, held in trust, and regularly audited. Agora is focused on regulatory compliance and is pursuing licenses where applicable.

“At Agora, we’ve assembled an incredible team with deep blockchain, financial markets, and payments experience. Together we’re highly focused on building the most liquid and widely accepted digital dollar,” said Drake Evans, co-founder and CTO of Agora. Nick and Drake are joined by co-founder Joe McGrady, COO of Agora.

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