The continued advancement of blockchain is pushing a diverse array of young entrepreneurs, engineers, and artists to expand its capacities further. All of these different industries combined on the digital interface have ultimately led to what is being touted as “the future of the internet”, otherwise known as web3. This new iteration of the World Wide Web incorporates concepts that originated in blockchain—such as decentralization, blockchain technologies, and token-based economics.
web3 is unquestionably on the come up—in 2021, more than 34,000 developers contributed code to open-source web3 projects. Encompassing gaming, financial services, art, programming, and music, web3 entrepreneurs are looking to harness Blockchain technology and cryptocurrency into a worldwide and accessible tool that everyone can tap into.
With a large ecosystem of potential within web3, many movers and shakers in the space are looking to come up with the next million-dollar (albeit crypto) idea to help this new platform take off. The following is a list that comprises the top 20 web3 Entrepreneurs and startups to look out for in 2022.
Jeremy Foo, CEO, TripCandy
TripCandy is an online booking platform that gives users the unique opportunity to become crypto investors while looking for accommodations around the globe, powered by partners such as Expedia, Booking.com, and Agoda.
Thanks to their original buyback program, every time a user books through TripCandy, a percentage of the total sale will be returned to them in the form of their crypto-tokens.
With every transaction, TripCandy buys CANDY tokens from the market, ensuring a constant demand while increasing the value of the tokens over time.
Through Binance Smart Chain, TripCandy holds 1,000,000,000 Tokens as of today.
Mildred Idada, Founding Partner, Open Web Collective (OWC)
Understanding the inherent challenges of starting a company, Mildred’s goal is to help emerging entrepreneurs that exist within web3 industries.
Through the OWC accelerator, startups can look to strengthen their project into a well-grounded and promising web3 company.
With their 12-week program, entrepreneurs will gain access to a vast range of experts and investors to help them reach their goals—helping emerging startups in every aspect of their entrepreneurial journey from tuning their business decisions to raising capital.
OWC addresses the need for a community in the ever-evolving world of web3 and blockchain startups.
Arnav Bathla, Founder, Coinbooks
Arnav Bathla is the 21-year-old founder of Coinbooks, an accounting platform for crypto-native organizations. The young entrepreneur dropped out of college to set up a web3 startup company in the U.S., and has already seen success as the quickly growing company has already raised over $3 million in its short six-month lifetime.
After arriving from India, Arnav managed to help Coinbooks draw the attention of Lattice Capital; Founders, Inc; and Multicoin Capital.
Coinbooks delves into the accounting aspect of crypto companies, succeeding traditional and manual accounting tasks into an interactive and fast platform for on-chain operations, generating financial reports, and integrating existing accounting software to web3 transactions.
Tim Dierckxsens, CEO and Co-founder, Venly
Tim Dierckxsens is the CEO and Co-founder of Venly. This Belgian-based blockchain company offers gaming and fintech companies a wide range of services and tools to help them venture into digital assets through cryptocurrency and NFTs.
At its core, Venly seeks to bring blockchain technology closer to everyone who has an interest in it. The company seeks to achieve this goal by providing its clients with the tools and platform needed to delve into the NFT market and web3 technology.
Granting access to their unique multi-blockchain NFT marketplace and a platform for users to sell their creations, Venly offers the opportunity to create and commercialize NFTs.
Users can easily access Venly Wallet services, which currently have over 2.5 million users, and different services where users can manage additional digital items across more than 12 blockchains.
Tegan Kline, Co-founder and Head of Business, Edge & Node
With a background in investment banking at large institutions such as Bank of America, Merrill Lynch, and Barclays, Co-founder and Head of Business at Edge & Node, Tegan Kline, is currently wielding her financial savvy to be a driving force in the web3 industry.
Edge & Node is the team behind The Graph, a decentralized network that provides users easy access to open data and organizes blockchain data through an indexable protocol.
Edge & Node has also created another derivative of blockchain, The Graph and Everest, which is a decentralized network that provides users with ease of accessibility and a web3 ledger registry. The team at Edge & Node is always pushing the envelope for the capacities of blockchain technology.
Connor Moy, Co-founder, Sturdy Exchange
A platform dedicated to web3 creators bringing different projects in music and entertainment, Sturdy Exchange offers exciting opportunities and a unique experience for users to enjoy.
Connor Moy and Lisandro Tolentino co-founded the platform in 2021. Based out of Los Angeles, California, Sturdy Exchange raised over USD $4 million by the last quarter of 2021.
Anyone can open a profile and become an NFT trader and collector immediately on Sturdy Exchange. Through credit card transfer or cryptocurrency, users worldwide can easily access exclusive artwork featured exclusively on their platform.
Artists looking to take part in the booming industry of web3 will find the assistance they need on Sturdy Exchange, from crafting their art to selling it in the web3 marketplace.
Alan Chiu, Founder, Boba Network
Under the mission of making crypto accessible to everyone, Founder Alan Chiu launched the Boba Network community in 2021, looking to speed up and lower costs for blockchain transactions in the Ethereum environment.
Boba Network is a shining example of web3 technology development. A layer 2 solution that optimizes transactional performance, the platform also lowers costs in a way that is fully compatible with the Ethereum network.
Powered by Enya, a web3 company that creates blockchain infrastructure and is behind the OMG foundation, this collective of companies are the driver behind Boba Network’s layer-2 solution-oriented project that processes thousands of transactions per second.
Clara Bullrich and Nico del Pino, Co-founders, Ola Guild Games
Clara Bullrich is a leading figure in web3 investment in Latin America. She is the co-founder of TheVentureCity, a venture capital investment hub and has also plays an active part taking over blockchain investment for different DAOs.
A leader in the Hispanic market in the play-to-earn community, Ola GG is a platform that extends the model of its parent company, Yield guild games, to hundreds of thousands of Spanish-speaking users.
Providing easy access to players in the region, the platform offers over 350 grants every week for users to engage in different games from their catalog, monetizing their online engagement in one of the largest networks of blockchain-backed gaming.
Manu Alzuru, Founder, DoinGud
A fusion of social awareness and blockchain technology, DoinGud presents itself as an exciting approach for NFT creators and social impact projects. Its founder and leader, Manu Alzuru, a mechanical engineer based in Venezuela, has launched the platform as a unique approach for socially responsible web3 entrepreneurs.
Through DoinGud’s platform, social causes can sign up and become eligible for donations, while NFT creators can upload their creations and submit them to their profile, where galleries and interested parties can help the creator sell their artwork through the gallery space.
Up to 95% of the earnings go directly to the creator’s pocket, with a minimum rate of 5% directed to a social cause of the creator’s choosing.
In addition, collectors and NFT enthusiasts can join in and support creators while generating a positive impact- getting started is easy, and with no crypto or blockchain experience needed, making it easy to get into web3 via DoinGud.
Manuel Beadroit, CEO and Co-founder, Belo App
Manuel Beadroit is the CEO and co-founder of the Argentinian digital wallet Belo App founded in 2022. This app acts as a bridge between currency and cryptocurrency, serving as a platform for those who wish to secure their money through cryptocurrency investment.
Available in 138 countries, Belo allows users to transfer and receive regular currency and crypto. Additionally, the app makes it accessible for everyone to keep track of their earnings while moving their assets free of charge.
Transferring money through the app to other members is quick and easy. The app also provides the option to allocate resources to outside wallets, broadening the use of the wallet to other users who are not subscribed to the Belo app.
For now, Belo App allows its users to manage BTC, ETH, DAI, USDC, and USDT.
Brendan Eich, CEO, and President, Brave Browser
CEO and President of Brave Software, Brendan Eich, leads Brave Browser. With security for its users in mind, the independent browser was built to provide users with a secure, ad-free, and private web browsing experience.
Brave is a web3-oriented browser that looks to uphold the user’s interest over big tech companies, pledging not to track any searches nor use information that might put the user at risk to outside watchers.
Additionally, all users interested can be awarded just for browsing the internet. Backed by Basic Attention Tokens (BAT), users are paid in tokens just for looking at ads, which can be used to buy cryptocurrency or tip blockchain creators.
Currently, Brave amounts to 54 million users every month and 16 million users every day.
Michael Gronager, Co-founder and CEO, Chainalysis
With broad experience in Big Data projects and already well established in the blockchain industry through the cryptocurrency exchange Kraken, Michael Gronager, Co-founder and CEO of Chainalysis, set the goal to fully integrate cryptocurrency into the financial system.
Chainalysis is an intelligence and investigation company that caters to its clients with tools, software, and investigations to help them safely commence blockchain ventures and digital assets.
From risk management tools for NFT traders and issuers to enacting crypto crime investigations to help reduce illicit activity and retrieve funds for victims, Chanalysis oversees the safe development of cryptocurrency in the current digital world we live in.
Mohamed Abdou, Founder, Pravica
Pravica combines blockchain technology and communication capabilities, ensuring s privacy while transforming the way people communicate on web3.
All data is stored on a web3 blockchain platform; but things like phone numbers, email, and all other personal information are not needed when creating a profile. The only thing required to get you started is a decentralized ID which users can get through the Blockchain Naming System (BNS).
Pravica has no access whatsoever to the user’s personal information, gaining access to a platform through their identity rather than an account. Through his platform, Abdou is ensuring a blockchain community where both privacy and security are valued.
Amogh Tiwari, Founder, Deefy
From Karnataka, India, Amogh Tiwari is broadening NFT opportunities through his platform Deefy, a decentralized protocol that brings financial services for digital assets to users. Mirroring other financial instruments while making NFTs attainable to everyone, Deefy lends and rents NFTs without any collateral.
Deefy looks to turn digital art into passive income for issuers or NFT holders interested in using digital art in other ways beyond selling. Thanks to Deefy’s renting solution, users can turn their NFTs into liquid assets in no time, making a profit while allowing others to experience the NFT wave with no collateral.
Deefy also makes NFTs more affordable, acting as a lender to interested parties, and through their buy now, pay later options, almost everyone can get into the NFT world.
Ivan Soto-Wright and Victor Faramond, Co-founders, MoonPay
Launched in 2019 in the pursuit of making the revolutionary wave of cryptocurrency more accessible, MoonPay is a financial technology company that encompasses day-to-day payment methods and blockchain technology, making cryptocurrency attainable for everyone.
Combining Ivan’s financial technology expertise and Victor’s long career in web technology, both entrepreneurs braided an on-ramp-off-ramp service that allows the user to purchase cryptocurrency in more than 160 countries.
The growing startup had drawn the attention of multiple investors, gaining further notoriety after November 2021 when its initial funding round closed at $555 million—making it a highly valued crypto company in only its early stages.
Evgeny Gaevoy, founder and CEO, Wintermute
A Blockchain-based market maker for digital assets, Wintermute creates markets in crypto, covering both centralized and decentralized exchanges and trading platforms. The platform helps to create algorithmic High-Frequency Trading markets in various financial products.
For Evgeny Gaevoy, founder and CEO at Wintermute, market liquidity in the financial world of Blockchain is as necessary as the asset itself. Wintermute provides liquidity by trading web3 assets, such as tokens with third parties, providing liquidity to investors and turning a profit for every transaction.
Wintermute trades in Central Finance (Ceci) and Decentralize Finance (DeFi), as well as more volatile assets such as Over Counter (OTC) instruments like derivatives.
Ayush Ranjan, CEO, and Co-founder, Huddle 01
Ayush Ranjan from Delhi, India, is the CEO and Co-founder of Huddle-01 a web3 video communication app designated for NFT communities, web3 creators, and blockchain enthusiasts. The app provides a communication platform that has been characterized as the “Zoom of web3.”
To use Huddle is very simple, users can access it by signing in with a crypto wallet which enables them to use blockchain domains. Users then use these domains, such as Unstoppable, as an identity in the servers and can use NFTs as avatars. Furthermore, users can also launch virtual meetings in Huddle without any wallet or email login simply by starting a session as a guest.
Decentralizing live streaming, opening up token-gated spaces, and storing meeting recordings in decentralized apps, are among the web3 features that give Huddle 01 a special place in the blockchain revolution.
Jae Kwon, President, Cosmos
Launched by the Interchain Foundation, a Swiss-based non-profit foundation presided by Jae Kwon, Cosmos is an ecosystem bound to become “The internet of blockchains” for its success at interconnecting multiple blockchains.
Since Blockchain consists of a decentralized and independent structure, interconnection between different chains is almost impossible, and this is where Cosmos looks to evolve blockchain technology as we know it.
Cosmo creates marketplaces allowing sovereignty in the global trade using Inter-Blockchain Communication (IBC), enabling developers to develop blockchain-based apps that easily interconnect with other blockchains.
Cosmos is taking the blockchain and web3 industries in a completely new direction—embracing the spirit of decentralization and using it to create a diverse ecosystem of interconnected blockchains.
Ariana Waller, CEO, Mueshi.io
Mushi.io is a marketplace dedicated to fine art NFT pieces. The crypto space allocates art from emerging creators, allowing interested users to buy, sell, and fractionally invest in NFT fine art.
CEO Ariana Waller, also known as Ariana the Techie, is a software engineer that looked to revitalize the NFT market while empowering emerging artists with web3 technology.
Building a thriving decentralized global market for fine art, Mueshi.io is taking NFT collectibles to a new level. The platform has partnered with established contemporary artists who collaborate directly within the platform to launch their own NFT collections into the Mueshi.io’s marketplace and the Metaverse.
Closing its final funding round in April 2022, just six months after it started operations in October 2021, the Miami-based web3 company has raised USD 3.3 million to date.
Iris ten Teije, Founder, Koia
Marketer and business developer Iris ten Teije is taking iconic collectibles and rare assets into the blockchain world, digitizing the way we interact with unique items. Koia, founded in 2021, allows users to own, buy and trade assets such as art pieces, Pokemon cards, watches, wine, and even comic books.
Koia’s unique models consist of acquiring rare items and allocating them into their blockchain-based marketplace, where worldwide enthusiasts can hold voting power related to the physical asset by buying Koia’s own NFT: the ‘Fraction.’
The underlying asset can have hundreds or thousands of the Fraction tokens, meaning that Koia is the legal owner of the item until a user buys 100% of the Fractions linked to it. When this happens, the user then becomes the owner of the physical asset.
Bonus: Michael Shmidt, CEO, Delchain
Delchain is a licensed and regulated company that provides a full suite of financial services to support both blockchain institutions and individual clients. The platform offers full-service and multi-currency banking through a multitude of partners—including companies in asset management as well as trading and advisory firms that support blockchain.
Delchain is a Financial and Corporate Services Provider and is a part of the largest private banking group in the Caribbean. Their multi-faceted network allows them to offer a a full suite of secure and sophisticated digital asset services including custody, trading, staking, and advisory.
Just this week Delchain announced their current interim CEO, Michael Schmidt, who comes from a role as Chief Commercial Officer of Deltec International Group. There, he managed a broad cross-functional set of executive responsibilities, wielding a total of 25 years of international experience in financial services to date.
Disclosure: This article mentions a client of an Espacio portfolio company.