Israeli Blockchain Startup StarkWare Who Invented zk-STARKS Privacy Feature Raises $30 Million

StarkWare Industries, an Israeli blockchain startup recently completed a $30 million funding round. The current round of funds comes on top of a $6.7 million grant to StarkWare from Ethereum Foundation, Tezos’ Arthur Breitman, Bitmain amongst others.

Paradigm was the main investor of the project with other investors being Intel Capital, Sequoia, Coinbase Ventures, Atomico, Multicoin Capital, DCVC, Wing, Consensys, Collaborative Fund, Scalar Capital and Semantic Ventures.

The company was established at the beginning of 2018 by its chief scientist Prof. Eli Ben Sasson of Technion, Prof. Alessandro Chiesa of UC Berkeley, Uri Kolodny, and Michael Riabzev.

The ambitious startup is aiming to generate a zero-knowledge proof (ZKP) technologies based on an algorithmic breakthrough through its co-founders. ZKP has the ability to prove that something exists or has taken place without exposing its content. Through this, they want to improve scalability and privacy in blockchains, providing zero-knowledge, succinct, transparent, and post-quantum secure.

The ZKP technology has uses in credit and money transfers. A user looking for a loan can answer a series of questions affecting his or her credit rating. An example for use case can be in money transfers: the ability to verify that a given transfer was reported to the tax authorities and received the appropriate approval. The only thing disclosed on the blockchain is that the money transfer took place and meets a series of conditions, without disclosing the amount or exactly which conditions it did or did not meet.

Now, Matt Huang of Paradigm will join StarkWare’s board of directors. Matt was the former partner at Sequoia who went ahead and co-founded Paradigm. StarkWare is also the first funding project by Paradigm.

One of the most conspicuous of the investors is Sequoia. They have been taking interest in blockchains companies lately. Sequoia invested in Chinese startup Nervous which hopes to provide a hybrid solution which amalgamates to make a public blockchain safe. Another prominent investor, Intel, is also venturing into the blockchain space. They had earlier secured a patent for a Bitcoin mining accelerator that reduces electricity consumption.

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