Worldcoin has announced that it was able to raise $25 million from investors and is now is currently valued at $1 billion.
Investors that took part in the funding include Andreessen Horowitz (a16z), Coinbase Ventures, Digital Currency Group (the parent company of CoinDesk) and angel investors which includes the likes of top crypto billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried and Reid Hoffman, the co-founder of LinkedIn.
Worldcoin is co-founded by Alex Blania, Sam Altman and Max Novendstern and it plans to create a new global digital currency that is fairly distributed and used by as many people as possible.
The company is based in Berlin, Germany, and currently has about 70 employees and 30 Orbs. The Orbs, as previously covered by Nairametrics is a silver-coloured spherical shaped device, that is as large as a basketball, to be used to scan people’s irises to ascertain their unique identities.
The orbs are handled by independent entrepreneurs the company calls “Orb Operators’, who take the devices into the world, (into remote villages and metro stations and university campuses) and convince people to sign up for free Worldcoin crypto with an eye scan, which the Orb uses to create a unique identifier called IrisHash that ensures the person is a human who has not collected worldcoin before.
According to some of the company’s prediction models, Worldcoin thinks over a billion people will have gazed into the Orb by 2023. Beginning in November, Worldcoin plans to ramp up production to an astonishing 4,000 Orbs per month, which the company plans to match with Orb Operators across the world.
What they are saying
Alex Blania told CoinDesk that Worldcoin has partnered with a “very big international manufacturer” with a plant in Germany, which will pump out about 50,000 Orbs per year.
Though Blania declined to name the company or say where the company was from, when asked if the manufacturer was Chinese, Blania responded stating, “Definitely not, for many reasons, and one of them is actually security. The Orb itself has private keys and signs every message it sends so we know it’s actually a real Orb. And that means we need to lock this whole supply chain totally up so we know it’s not compromised.”
Why this matters
According to Worldcoin, 130,000 people around the world have already gazed into the Orb in crypto’s version of a universal basic income (UBI).
Alex Blania told CoinDesk that the amount each person receives depends on how early in the project’s roll-out they got involved, with the amount diminishing as more people are onboarded, but that the amount is roughly valued at between $10 and $200. This amount is doled out over two years, with 10% available immediately in a wallet app generated by the Orb.
Worldcoin is built as a layer 2 system operating on the Ethereum network, with a maximum token supply of 10 billion worldcoins.
According to Blania, 8 billion of the coins will be distributed globally as the company’s stated goal is to give worldcoin to “every human on earth”, while 2 billion worldcoin will be reserved for Worldcoin’s foundation and investors.